world music, jazz, popular music

Cimbalom Gala

The Cimbalom in the 21st Century

one interval
Festival Theatre
  • Produced by Müpa Budapest

Ticket prices


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The cimbalom in the 21st century - this is Müpa Budapest's motto as it organises its seventh World-Wide festival. The previous ones leave no doubt that the cimbalom is much more than a piece of Hungarian heritage: it is every bit a world-wide marvel.

Naturally, we would not have to convince anyone of this if not for the fact that the second half of the 20th century brought a prejudice against the instrument for being used primarily by the hospitality industry as supposed - and widely derided - 'Gypsy music'. Whereas in the 1920s, the virtuoso musician Aladár Rácz amazed the world touring with a cimbalom that had been furnished with a damper pedal by master instrument maker Vencel József Schunda. It was Rácz's influence that prompted Igor Stravinsky himself to learn how to play the cimbalom, which he later incorporated into his works Ragtime and Renard. At the end of the century, esteem for the cimbalom had returned, and it has been considered a full-fledged instrument in the realms of contemporary music, world music and jazz ever since. In this golden age, the peerless cimbalomist Márta Fábián has been followed by other outstanding - in terms of both their output and international success - artists like Ágnes Szakály, Kálmán Balogh, Miklós Lukács and András Szalai. All four will serve on the jury of the cimbalom competition to be held at the Budapest Music Center in August and later will join the winners for this gala concert at Müpa Budapest in December. The aim of Miklós Lukács, the initiator behind the competition, along with placing the cimbalom in a 21st-century context, was to enable new talents to introduce themselves - and they could hardly dream of a more memorable experience or greater recognition than to play alongside with top masters of the instrument at Müpa Budapest's cimbalom festival.

Presented by: Müpa Budapest

Parking information

The Müpa Budapest underground garage gates will be operated by an automatic number plate recognition system. Parking is free of charge for visitors with tickets to any of our paid performances on that given day. The detailed parking policy of Müpa Budapest is available here.

Safe ticket purchase

Dear Visitors, please note that only tickets purchased from the Müpa website and official ticket offices are guaranteed to be valid. To avoid possible inconvenience, we suggest buying tickets to our performances and concerts via the mupa.hu website, the Interticket national network (jegy.hu) or at our official ticket offices.

  • cimbalom
    Ágnes Szakály, Kálmán Balogh, Miklós Lukács, András Szalai
  • The award winners of the 2019 BMC International Cimbalom Competition
    Mykhaylo Zakharya, Dániel Szabó, Erzsébet Gódor, Sándor Ürmös
  • cello
    Ditta Rohmann
  • flute
    Noémi Győri
  • guitar
    Mihály György
  • double bass
    Csaba Novák
  • piano
    István Dominko
  • programme curator
    Endre Liber



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