“Hungarians on the Cutting Edge”
ABOUT THE ARTISTS / PERFORMERS:
Ernő Tálas, tenor, is a retired member of the Royal Swedish Opera Company. He has toured all over Europe during his decades long musical career, and has produced numerous recordings as well. He was born in Jászladány, Hungary, and graduated from the Ferene Liszt Academy in Budapest. He left Hungary as a result of the 1956 Revolution. He was named an Honorary citizen of his hometown of Jászladány, and he has established a scholarship for students at his former high school, the Jászladányi Gimnázium. Although he left his Hungarian homeland, he is quick to tell everyone that his heart always remained in Hungary. He has been a frequent guest artist of the Hungarian Congress’Literary and Artistic program on numerous occasions in many past years.
Éva Mécs is an amazingly talented woman. Her story begins in Budapest, Hungary, where she was born and where she grew up. Éva holds a Master’s Degree in Performing Arts and was involved in the theater, radio broadcasting, and movies for 10 years. In 1984 she married and together with her husband, in 1985, they moved to the United States, where Éva became involved with other creative adventures. She was drawn to the performing arts and to writing, from very early on. Her analytical personality, curiosity, the force to find the answers to all the “whys,” pushed her to discover everything connected to human nature. She changed her homeland, hoping to find happiness in the New World. Her book, entitled The Porcelain Figurine – A PORECELÁN BABA, was published in Budapest in 2007. Feeling compelled to react to the currently changing social and political events in the USA, she had the urge to interpret her story into English, thus making it possible to introduce it to those USA-American, and perhaps to British, Canadian, and Australian readers as well, who would like to read a page turner love story from a “past,” but very revealing era. At Friendship Village of South Hills (PA.), an assisted living community where Éva works, her colleagues are highly complementary not only of her numerous literary and artistic talents, but also of her graciousness. They describe her as a breath of fresh air, a delight to work with, always caring and empathetic with residents, and that it is an honor to have Eva as a staff member. The Hungarian Congress is also honored to have Éva Mécs perform once again as a guest artist this evening.
Ágnes Kállay started playing the violoncello at the age of six. She graduated from the Ferenc Liszt Academy of Music, Budapest, in 2006. She earned a DAAD scholarship and studied at the Hochschule für Musik in Cologne, Germany. She won the Alpen Adria International Violoncello Competition in Gorizia, Italy, and placed first at the Beethoven Chamber Music Competition, London, UK, in 2007. She is one of the founders of Excanto Ensemble. She is a member of Camerata Hungarica, Marquise and Excanto early music ensembles and a permanent guest of Mandel Quartet. She received a scholarship last year to complete her study with Nick Tzavaras of the Shanghai Quartet at the Montclair State University, here in the USA.
Péter Tóth (born in Hungary) is a pianist and winner of the International Piano Competitions in Wittenberg (1997), Bovino (1998), International Ferenc Liszt Piano Competition in Weimar (2000) and in Budapest (2001). In 1998 he received the Liszt Academy’s “Sári Bíró Memorial Award” as the best young pianist of the year. Péter Tóth started his musical studies at the Béla Bartók Music School in Békéscsaba when he was eleven years old. At thirteen, he won a scholarship to the Ferenc Liszt Academy of Music in Budapest. During his studies he has had several opportunities to gather experience on the international concert stage. Among others he has given concerts in the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, in the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow, in France, Austria, and Japan, in the Czech Republic, in Belgium and in Germany. Péter Tóth is considered one of the most promising music talents in Hungary. In 2005 he
made his debut in Munich with a solo concert. He has performed with the Hungarian Virtuoso Chamber Orchestra, MATAV Symphony Orchestra, and with the Ferenc Liszt Chamber Orchestra. He made recordings in 2004 in Scotland exclusively for Stockfisch Records, for whom he has recorded LATE PIANO WORKS OF LISZT. This CD recording has won the 2006 Grand Prix International Liszt du Risqué Award by The Franz Liszt Society. Since that time, he has continued his concert appearances. In 2009, he received a full scholarship for continued studies at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, TX (USA).