BFO in the community – Synagogue concerts
About the program
Music should belong to everyone” The original meaning of Zoltán Kodály’s much quoted statement, which is often taken out of context, is nearly lost. “Music Belongs to Everyone” is also the title of a compilation of his theoretical writings published in 1954. The quotation that so succinctly summarises the objectives of Kodályian musical education is also an excellent description of the philosophy and community programmes of Budapest Festival Orchestra. Similarly to other leading symphonic orchestras around the world, the ensemble is committed to educating its young audience and to bringing its music to those who have little or no opportunity to attend its concerts. This ambition reached a new milestone in the last season.
In June, the musicians of the Budapest Festival Orchestra gave concerts in three synagogues. The greater part of Hungarian synagogues lie abandoned as a result of the Holocaust. The vast majority of Jewish communities were annihilated. Many of those who managed to return emigrated, moved elsewhere or no longer practised their religion. Synagogues lost their original function. Some were put to use for unworthy purposes – as warehouses or storage spaces, while others were simply left to ruin.
“Music reawakens the spirit of the synagogue and if someone sitting there learns something about spiritual matters, than it has partly served its purpose. I say partly because a synagogue also needs Jews,” said author György Konrád, commenting on the synagogue concerts. In this spirit, the Budapest Festival Orchestra, in a joint effort with Rabbi Slomó Köves, head of the United Hungarian Jewish Congregation, organised a new series of events in abandoned synagogues across Hungary. BFO is committed to raising awareness about Jewish heritage and telling communities about the diversity that used to exist in Hungary.
The purpose of these fun and inclusive events is to help every Hungarian learn and recognise the history of the Jewry in Hungary. The synagogue concerts of the new season will feature works by Mendelssohn, David Stock and Prokofiev followed by a historical review and an open discussion led by Rabbi Slomó Köves, concluded by the opportunity to taste some typical Jewish delicacies.
The admission to the concert is free. Registration: