The most important class, however, for me and for hundreds of other Hungarian musicians, was the chamber-music class. From about the age of fourteen, and until graduation from the Academy, all instrumentalists except the heavy-brass players and percussionists had to participate in this course. Presiding over it for many years was the composer Leó Weiner, who thus exercised an enormous influence on three generations of Hungarian musicians.

Sir Georg Solti


Music meant for the ears

Music meant for the ears


One hundred years ago on 25th March, the very day Claude Debussy passed away, Béla Bartók was celebrating his 37th birthday. A couple of weeks later the periodical ‘Esztendő’, owned by Lajos Hatvany, asked Bartók to assess the works of the French composer. He summed up his analysis thus: “The significance of Debussy is unquestionably revealed by the impact that he exercised – in the best possible meaning of the word – on the young generation of musicians, both abroad and in our own country. Whether this impact will prevail and evolve into further progress is impossible to predict. However, one thing is for sure, his compositions will not lose colour because he pooled great value in them.”