Since 1961 the George Washington Award of the American Hungarian Foundation honours those who eminently contribute to the understanding and dialogue among men and nations. On the 13 of August, following Béla Bartók, Antal Doráti and Yehudi Menuhin the Budapest Festival Orchestra (BFO), one of the top 10 orchestras in the world and its music director, Ivan Fischer receive the Award. The purpose of the new Bridging Europe festival of the BFO is similar: creating a dialogue between European countries and the Hungarian audiences through their cultures.
The George Washington Award honours persons whose eminent contributions are in the broad field of human knowledge, the arts, commerce, industry, the sciences and understanding among men and nations. Among those in the field of music who have been honoured since 1961 with the George Washington Award by the Foundation include the late Béla Bartók, Antal Dorati, Marta Eggerth, George Jellinek, Yehudi Menuhin, Fritz Reiner, Janos Scholz, Tibor Serly, Janos Starker and Joseph Szigeti.
The Awards will be presented on 13th August, following the US debut performance of Iván Fischer’s new production of Mozart’s opera “Le Nozze di Figaro” with an international cast and the Budapest Festival Orchestra. The partnership between Iván Fischer and the Orchestra has proved to be the greatest success stories in the past three decades of classical music.
The Budapest Festival Orchestra celebrates its thirtieth anniversary in 2013. The orchestra - selected by critics among the ten best classical ensembles of the world - in collaboration with the Palace of Arts launches a new series in the spirit of the George Washington Award. The purpose of the “Bridging Europe“ festival is to present European countries to Hungarian audiences through their cultures. But the significance of the initiative extends beyond the boundaries of Hungary: the main patron of the event is Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council.