This evening is a source of pride for Hungarians
16. 11. 2018.
“This is an evening that serves as a source of pride to us, the Hungarians”, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán declared on Hungarian M5 television on Thursday evening prior to the premier of the first opera by world famous Hungarian composer György Kurtág in Milan.

The Prime Minister congratulated György Kurtág, explaining that it is a huge acknowledgement that the premier of the Kossuth Prize-winning Hungarian composer is being held at the Scala opera house in Milan.

“While the Hungarian language, which few people speak, separates us from the rest of the world to some extent, through music, with the help of our musical geniuses, we can state who we are and what we think about the world”, Mr. Orbán highlighted.

Photo: Balázs Szecsődi

In a statement from the museum of the Scala opera house, standing next to the piano of Franz Liszt, the Prime Minister emphasised: “We can be proud of the fact that the geniuses of Hungarian music, including Franz Liszt, Béla Bartók, György Ligeti and György Kurtág, have contributed to the history of world music with their works”.

“I am positive that the most important place for the Hungarian people during these two-three hours is Milan”, Mr. Orbán declared.

Photo: Balázs Szecsődi

György Kurtág’s work, Fin de Partie is a musical rendition of the work with a similar title by Samuel Becke: Endgame. The opera was composed to the French translation of the play. The opera was co-produced by the Scala and Dutch National Opera. The work is being brought to the stage by Pierre Audi, which is also a debut performance by the French-Lebanese director in the Scala. The Scala’s orchestra is being conducted by Markus Stenz, conductor of the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra.

The stage and costume designer of the world premier is Christof Hetzer, from Austria, and the four singing roles are played by Frode Olsen (Hamm), Leigh Melrose (Clov), Hilary Summers (Nell) and Leonardo Cortellazzi (Nagg).

Photo: Balázs Szecsődi

György Kurtág began working on the opera in around 2010 at the request of Alexander Pereira, who at the time was intendant of the Salzburg Festival, and later became intendant of the Scala opera house in Milan. The composer, who lived in France for an extended period, completed the work after moving home to Budapest.