Anna Dalos Institute for Musicology, Research Centre for the Humanities, Táncsics Mihály u. 7., H-1014 Budapest, Hungary

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Although Sándor Veress achieved his first significant successes in Hungary and abroad at the turn of the 1930s and 1940s, musicological research still remains indebted to the detailed analysis of the composer's career related to the history of Hungarian music and cultural life. Based on press and archival documents, letters and recollections, and the historical literature of the period as well, the present study attempts to explore the socio-cultural environment that characterized and helped to unfold Veress's development. My study looks at the composer's network of contacts, his family ties and the political-ideological movements and relations with the Reformed Church that promoted his career, and examines their direct influence on Sándor Veress's works composed during this period, especially The Miraculous Flute (1937), the Japanese Symphony (1940) and Térszili Katica (1943).


Although Sándor Veress achieved his first significant successes in Hungary and abroad at the turn of the 1930s and 1940s, musicological research still remains indebted to the detailed analysis of the composer's career related to the history of Hungarian music and cultural life. Based on press and archival documents, letters and recollections, and the historical literature of the period as well, the present study attempts to explore the socio-cultural environment that characterized and helped to unfold Veress's development. My study looks at the composer's network of contacts, his family ties and the political-ideological movements and relations with the Reformed Church that promoted his career, and examines their direct influence on Sándor Veress's works composed during this period, especially The Miraculous Flute (1937), the Japanese Symphony (1940) and Térszili Katica (1943).

In May 1945 Sándor Veress entered the Hungarian Communist Party. 1 By that time he had already been a member of the Music Council within the Hungarian Arts Council established on April 10, 2 and a few weeks later he became a member of the nominating body of the so-called Confidential Committee at the Liszt Academy of Music; 3 some months later he joined the Directorial Board of the Academy, which supported the work of Director General Ede Zathureczky. 4 A committee was also set up to prepare the bylaws of the Academy, in which Veress also participated. 5 He gave a commemorative speech at the Communist Party's Bartók Memorial Concert on October 3, and three days later Threnos was premiered at another concert commemorating the martyrs of the Hungarian War of Independence of 1848–1849. 6 At the same time Veress became a member of the preparatory committee for the planned Bartók Academy, 7 and in early December he was elected executive president to the new but short-lived academy. 8 His activity and his broad public acceptance were reflected not only by his aforementioned committee memberships and leading positions but also by the relatively frequent performance of his compositions 9 and his other public appearances. 10 The Attila József Songs composed at this time became a trademark of his left-wing commitment. 11

In an article written in 2008, Rachel Beckles Willson sensitively pointed out that Veress's membership of the Communist Party and his intensive involvement in musical and cultural life may be interpreted as signs of anxiety, considering his burgeoning national and international career during the war. 12 It is highly likely that judging Veress's role was a subject of corridor conversations among music professionals, outside the public sphere. This is suggested by István Raics's article published in the journal Demokrácia [Democracy] on May 27, 1945, in which he refers to Veress – together with János Ferencsik – as artists “known for their leftist behavior at all times”; moreover, he even goes so far as to claim that Veress was blacklisted in the previous political regime. 13 Raics is obviously distorting reality – I will reflect on the reasons later in the paper – but the fact is that Veress managed to preserve his image as a left-wing intellectual who opposed the previous regime and was therefore credible until the summer of 1946. 14

In July 1946, as a representative of the Ministry of Culture, Veress became a member of the so-called “cleansing committee” of the Hungarian Opera together with András Mihály and Committee Chair Imre Oltványi, writer-economist and Member of the National Assembly. The official task of the Committee was to compile the Opera's B-list, i.e. the list of civil servants who had to be deprived of their jobs because of their activities in the previous regime. It is very likely, however, that the Ministry primarily expected the Committee to prepare the ground for Aladár Tóth's appointment as director by placing the previous director, Pál Komáromy, who was actually successful in his position in restoring the functioning of the Opera House, on the B-list. The plan to remove Komáromy aroused a furore in the press, and the attacks against the then only 29-year-old András Mihály, a representative of the Free Association of Hungarian Musicians, were so vulgar that even Kodály felt he had to defend him. 15 Mihály, however, was trying to deflect responsibility, saying that Komáromy's removal had been initiated by Veress, who had acted in accordance with his own convictions and not with the expectations of the Ministry of Culture. 16 This was the statement which triggered a series of attacks on Veress, and which, although successfully repelled by the Communist press, 17 nevertheless damaged Veress's hitherto stable position.

Nonetheless, journalists attacking Veress highlighted only two elements in his activities of the era before 1945: the Japanese Symphony, as a document of the composer's Japanese-friendly and Fascist convictions, and his inaugural speech at the Academy of Music in September 1944, barely three weeks before the Arrow Cross takeover but already during the German occupation. 18 In this article I will attempt to review Sándor Veress's pre-1945 career and examine his family background, his network of connections, his room for manoeuvre, his search for a new path as well as his attitudes to cultural-political public life in the Horthy era by researching press materials, archival documents and the historical accounts of the period. My study will also refine a number of biographical details regarding Sándor Veress's first creative period and previously published catalogues of his work.

Veress's first public performance which attracted the attention of the press took place on March 15, 1922, when he – a pianist aged only 15 – performed at the culture-evening of the Buda branch of the right-wing Association of Awakening Hungarians. 19 The Veress family had been living in Budapest for six years by then. 20 The composer's biographers, Veress's autobiographical writings and his brother's late statements generally portray the career of the composer's father, Endre Veress, as a success story. 21 However, the family's remaining letters indicate that the archivist Veress, who grew up in Bucharest and became widely known as a researcher of Romanian history, publishing a number of valuable writings, lost his job in the ministry in 1921 because of his Romanian-friendly statements and from then on tried to support his family by working as a courtroom interpreter and running a translation office. 22 The composer's mother, Mária Méhely, would have liked to become a singer hoping to restore the family's financial security with opera and concert performances, but her husband and her family unanimously objected to her plans, 23 and thus she was only allowed to perform at social events, without being paid. 24 The family's financial difficulties are clearly illustrated by the fact that their small house in Hunfalvy Street, where the four members of the Veress family shared their home with Mária Méhely's parents, 25 was run by the mother alone with the help of only one maid, which was unusual in their social circles, 26 and the Méhelys had to make significant contributions to the upkeep of the family, which had become heavily indebted when the house was bought. 27

It is a well-known fact from the Veress-research that the composer's grandfather – also Sándor – not only participated in the Hungarian Revolution and War of Independence of 1848–1849, but also emigrated with Lajos Kossuth after the defeat and wrote the history of this emigration. 28 Later he entered the service of the king of Romania and had a successful career as a railway engineer. 29 However, it is less well known that the father of the émigré Veress, Ferenc Veress (the composer's great-grandfather) was a Reformed priest in Sarkad, a small town in the southern part of the Great Hungarian Plain, and guarded the Holy Crown of Hungary in the town's parsonage for a couple of days at the end of the War of Independence. 30 As we will see below, the family's Reformed connections played an important role in the building of the young musician's career.

The Méhely family, on the other hand, was Catholic, 31 and despite the inevitable religious tensions typical of mixed marriages, especially with regard to which religion the children shall belong, the head of the family, Pál Méhely, was attracted by the idea that through his son-in-law he could marry his daughter off to a family famous not only throughout Transylvania but also in Hungarian history. 32 The Méhelys showed a strong commitment to politics and public life. Nevertheless, serious conflicts arose within the family from the fact that Pál's cousin Lajos, a biologist and university professor in Budapest and member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, had been striving to lay the biological foundations of the Hungarian race theory after 1919 and was cited as the greatest “scientific” authority in the movement of Racial Defence. 33 He strongly supported the introduction of the numerus clausus in 1920. 34 At the same time, Pál Méhely's son Kálmán, who died young and was adored by the child Sándor Veress, 35 became a member of parliament as an opposition liberal politician, and when he was elected dean of the University of Economics in 1923, he publicly rejected the application of the numerus clausus. 36

In many ways, this family background played a decisive role in the development of the young Sándor Veress's outlook on life. In addition to the categorical imperative of community involvement and the commitment to an academic career it defined the social environment in which the young musician was originally active, and it gave him a strong impetus to seek a way out of the seemingly hopeless impoverishment and peripheralization of his family which, together with their professional failures, caused frustration for his parents. The young graduate Veress experienced existential insecurity, too: in his recollections he himself referred to the fact that he found his job as an assistant to Bartók at the Academy of Sciences, which was called an “internship” in those days, only through the National Committee of Unemployed Graduates set up at the initiative of Bálint Hóman, Minister of Religion and Education in the wake of the Great Depression, but his salary was not enough to live on. 37 Veress's activities in the 1930s and 1940s clearly show that he seized every opportunity that could help him to get by. His desire for career advancement was fuelled by the precarious financial situation of his family as well as by his professional ambitions ranging through many fields, and his exceptionally wide network of contacts played a decisive role in this.

The story of the Japanese Symphony is a striking illustration of how Veress's domestic and international career was influenced by the environment in which he grew up. Following family tradition, as a part of his commitment to public activities, Veress, in his mid-twenties, was active as a solo pianist and accompanist at the country tours of the National Gábor Bethlen Association, an association of the Hungarian Reformed Church in 1933 and 1934, where Bishop László Ravasz also frequently gave recitals. 38 András Tasnádi Nagy, State Secretary for Justice, who was later sentenced to death by the People's Court in 1945 for having become a member of the board of the National Union of Legislators of the Arrow Cross after Szálasi came to power, had been appointed leader of the Association in 1933. 39 Throughout his political career, Tasnádi sought to strengthen the positions of the members of the Hungarian Reformed Church. The contact between politics and the church is documented by the fact that on October 31, 1933, Reformation Day, the Bethlen Association, the Hungarian Calvin Association, the Luther Association and the Ferenc Dávid Association held a joint celebration in the Vigadó, which was attended not only by Tasnádi Nagy, but also by the Regent, Miklós Horthy himself, who was also Reformed. 40 The Goudimel Choir's performance at the event was not conducted by the choir's leader, László Lajtha, but by his former assistant at the National Museum, the young Veress, whose name sounded well in Reformed circles. 41

Another member of the Bethlen Association leadership was the retired Lieutenant General, Imre Csécsi Nagy – as executive co-chairman he was actually the second man of the Association –, who was also active in the Hungarian-Nippon Society as executive chairman. 42 Csécsi Nagy, like László Ravasz and Veress, came from a clergyman's family, and he was also a regular participant in the Bethlen Association's country tours, which means he must have known the young musician personally. The Hungarian-Nippon Society started playing a particularly important role in public life in Hungary in October 1935, when one of Japan's richest businessmen, Mitsui Takaharu, gave 75,000 pengős to Hungary for five years in the form of a foundation, of which the state was allowed to use 10,000 pengős annually and the Hungarian-Nippon Society 5,000 pengős annually for promoting Japanese and Far Eastern culture. 43 From these funds a Japanese library was established at the University of Budapest, and a permanent Japanese teacher (Tokunaga Yasumoto) was appointed to work there from the summer of 1941 onwards. The Hungarian-Nippon Society funded Hungarian scholars' research trips to Japan, modernized the Ferenc Hopp Museum of East Asia and initiated new publications, such as the journal entitled Távolkelet [Far East]. 44 Mitsui Takaharu's gesture was clearly linked to the Japanese Empire's desire to become culturally and economically as well as politically visible in Europe, especially in the Allied countries. 45 On November 15, 1937, the Hungarian-Japanese Friendship and Intellectual Cooperation Agreement was signed at the initiative of the Japanese and with the support of Bálint Hóman, covering the fields of science, fine arts, music, literature, film, radio and sport. 46

There is no direct evidence indicating that either the donation or the cooperation agreement had anything to do the with the inclusion of Veress's symphony among the compositions – works by Richard Strauss, Ildebrando Pizzetti and Jacques Ibert – performed in Tokyo at the celebration of the 2600th anniversary of the Japanese Empire, but the Hungarian-Japanese Government Committee on Culture considered this success to be the joint result of the two collaborations. 47 News reports about the Japanese Symphony regularly mention that Veress won the competition for young composers announced for this occasion by Bálint Hóman, 48 but I have not found any trace of this competition yet. This is why János Demény's information from 1944 seems all the more peculiar: notably that the deadline for the competition announced by Hóman was so short that Veress was the only composer who could submit a work, as his symphony had already been finished. 49 In an earlier publication from 1941, Demény also writes that Jenő Ádám, Rezső Kókai and János Viski had been asked before Veress to compose the festive work. 50 Against this background, it seems very likely that Tasnádi Nagy and Csécsi Nagy together intended to choose the winner of the competition, which was in fact not even publicly announced, and recommend him to Minister of Culture Hóman. In this respect, it is very telling that both Jenő Ádám and János Viski were Reformed, and there were some pastors among Viski's ancestors similarly to Veress's and Csécsi Nagy's, 51 so András Tasnádi Nagy's support is not surprising. Although Kókai was born a Roman Catholic, he won the St Stephen's competition actually announced by Hóman in 1939 with his scenic oratorio King Stephen. 52

The manuscript of the Veress Symphony was reported to be delivered to Tokyo by a special embassy courier in January or February 1940. 53 The premiere took place on December 7, 1940 in the Japanese capital, presumably conducted by Hashimoto Kunihiko and performed by an occasional orchestra. 54 According to press reports, the piece was performed several times in Tokyo and Osaka, as well as on Japanese radio. 55 Similarly to the other European gift-compositions, a recording was made of the work, which was also sent to Hungary: 56 the Japanese Imperial family sent a gift album of the records to Regent Miklós Horthy; it was only he who received the album along with the German, French and Italian heads of state. 57 It is possible, however, that some private owners managed to obtain it: in his review after the Hungarian premiere on October 10, 1941, Endre Szervánszky claimed that he had already known the symphony from the vinyl record released earlier. 58 János Demény mentions that Veress also had a copy of the vinyl record – perhaps the one Szervánszky might have held in his hands 59 – but the Veresses' house in Hunvalvy Street was bombed during the siege of Buda, and many valuable family documents were lost, including the record, probably. 60

The Hungarian premiere took place at a concert of the Metropolitan Orchestra in Vigadó, conducted by Ahn Eak-tai, who was of Korean origin but claimed to be Japanese; he also conducted his own composition (Etenraku Fantasy) in the concert. 61 Critics found the performance of Veress's work particularly bad. 62 Thus, when János Ferencsik conducted the symphony with the Budapest Metropolitan Orchestra on January 8, 1943, critics unanimously claimed that it had been the first worthy and authentic performance of the composition. 63 The radio held a celebration on April 29, 1943 to mark Emperor Hirohito's birthday, and the symphony was performed again as a part of the program, conducted by Lajos Rajter. 64 As the Japanese Symphony became known, it imposed some obligations on Veress. In February 1941, for instance, he and Sándor Végh had to attend the Hungarian musical evening of the Japanese ambassador in Rome, at which Ahn Eak-tai also performed. 65

At the time of Tokio premiere of the Symphony, on December 7, 1940, Veress was no longer an unknown young composer. It is very telling that his ballet A csodafurulya [The Miraculous Flute] was premiered in Rome two weeks earlier, on November 21. 66 Although his works had already been performed at concerts in Budapest since 1931, 67 it was only later, in 1935, that the most significant advances with regard to the performance of his compositions occurred. This was closely linked to the formation of the New Hungarian String Quartet led by Sándor Végh, which regularly performed first his String Quartet no. 1 and later his String Quartet no. 2 in Hungary and abroad, including Prague, Vienna, London, Geneva, Basel and Paris. 68 Veress's friendship with Végh further strengthened the composer's later presence on the international and domestic music scene, primarily because Végh was able to play the Violin Concerto and the so-called Second Sonata for Violin and Piano with Veress as his accompanist, too. 69 The two musicians became regular guests on the programs of international new music festivals, especially of the International Society for New Music, and at the height of their collaboration, in 1942, they performed the Sonata for Violin and Piano at the Venice Biennale's Contemporary Music Week. 70

In the meantime, the composer's works were performed more and more frequently in Hungary. The Budapest Metropolitan Orchestra played a decisive role in the creation of the performances. New Hungarian music became a major beneficiary of the ensemble's programing policy: they played contemporary Hungarian music so systematically that this practice became part of the orchestra's image. What is more, not only the capital city but also the cultural government provided the orchestra with considerable financial support, especially for the new Hungarian music festivals they organized, such as the Week of New Hungarian Music in 1943. 71 An increasing number of Veress's orchestral works were performed under the baton of Jenő Kenessey, Béla Csilléry and later János Ferencsik: the early version of the Violin Concerto under the title “Aria,” the Nógrád Verbunk, the Cuka-szőke Csárdás, and the Divertimento, 72 and the compositions received extremely positive reviews from critics. 73 In this respect, it is also worth noting that the Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra has come under increasing criticism for its relationship with contemporary Hungarian music. In a press comment on its concert of February 23, 1940 the orchestra was criticized as to why none of Sándor Veress's compositions was played. 74 Its first Veress performance came in 1944: on March 25, János Ferencsik conducted the Térszili Katica Suite at a youth concert with the Philharmonic Orchestra. 75

Yet the composer's image in the professional community was already unanimously positive long before that. In 1942, when the Kisfaludy Society awarded the Greguss Prize to János Viski for his composition of Enigma on the recommendation of Viktor Papp, a heated debate ensued in the press. 76 Dénes Tóth was perplexed by the choice, given that Bartók's String Quartets nos. 5 and 6, the Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion, his Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta and his Mikrokosmos had been written in the previous six years, as well as Kodály's Te Deum of Budavár, Jesus and the Traders, the Peacock Variations, the Concerto and Dohnányi's symphonic cantata Cantus Vitae. Dénes Tóth also listed Veress's Japanese Symphony and Violin Concerto among the most significant compositions of the period. The controversy which then unfolded makes it clear that Veress was already considered as one of the most important composers of new Hungarian music in 1942. Based on his Violin Concerto, which was performed at the New Hungarian Music Week, Sándor Jemnitz wrote in Népszava that Veress clearly belonged to the most talented members of his generation. 77 Endre Gaál made a similar statement in the Magyar Nemzet; 78 i.e. music critics' opinion of Veress was not influenced by their political convictions.

Veress became known not only in the representative concert scene, but also in the choral movement. His choral compositions published by the Magyar Kórus Kiadóvállalat [Hungarian Chorus Publishing House] were regularly performed by various choirs, such as the Seraphic Choir of Pécs conducted by László Agócsy, 79 the Budapest Chamber Choir conducted by Géza Paulovics, 80 and the Erzsébet Szilágyi Secondary Grammar School Girls' Choir conducted by Adrienne Sztojanovits. 81 However, neither the former nor the latter public success enabled him to live in comfortable financial circumstances. His financial insecurity is illustrated by the fact that he was forced to take on odd jobs, such as composing Russian-style incidental music for the National Theater's production of Yevgeny Ilyin's drama. 82 His livelihood seemed so precarious that in the autumn and winter of 1938 he and his fiancée (later his wife) decided to move to London. 83

Veress does not mention in his memoirs, however, that the idea of settling down in London – apart from the fact that his fiancée was English, so the decision seemed more than reasonable – may have been based on a success in Hungary. Béla Paulini's revue based on folk life images, entitled Magyar csupajáték [Hungarian Play of Plays], was performed at the Művész Theater on May 21, 1938. The work was a joint production of artists, dancers and composers, with the participation of a number of artists who had some connection with the National Theater under Antal Németh. 84 This is how Ferenc Farkas, György Ránki, Kálmán Antos and Zoltán Pongrácz were involved in the project, and this is how Veress composed The Miraculous Flute. 85 The choreography of the Hungarian Play of Plays was written by Aurél Milloss, who had already been internationally renowned at the time but found it difficult to establish himself in Hungary, and who founded a dance studio at the National Theater on Antal Németh's initiative. 86

When Veress moved to London in December 1938, it was already known that this play written by multiple authors would be performed at the Adelphi Theater in London on April 27, 1939. The Hungarian production, which featured the BBC Orchestra conducted by Béla Endre, was such a huge success that it became the first theatrical production to be broadcast live on London television. 87 Veress's association with the BBC Orchestra may also have originated from there, and it was certainly due to the success of the Hungarian Play of Plays that the orchestra played the Divertimento at a concert in July 1939. 88 However, as Veress's letters to Kodály and Bartók attest, the composer was already preparing to return home at the time of the performance, even if he was uncertain whether it was the right decision or not. 89 This means that it was not the outbreak of World War II that forced him to return, as he later wrote. 90 His three-year contract with the Boosey & Hawkes Publishing House, which was a result of Bartók's mediation, was, as he wrote to Kodály, rather difficult to accomplish. 91 The timing of the return trip also coincided with Paulini's decision: thanks to its success, the Hungarian Play of Plays had been invited to tour the United States, but the tense political situation meant that eventually Paulini did not dare to travel: his decision was influenced by the fact that the Aegis Travel Agency, which had provided the London trip, did not accept responsibility for any force majeure, such as the outbreak of war, which did indeed occur shortly afterwards. 92

Although Aurél Milloss was unable to attend the London performances, as he had been working as ballet director at the Rome Opera House since 1939, he considered The Miraculous Flute part within the Hungarian Play of Plays so good that he decided to present the short ballet in Rome, too. The venue was not the Opera House in Rome, but an experimental stage, the Teatro delle Arti, where Milloss had four chamber theater productions in 1940, two of which had a Hungarian theme: in addition to The Miraculous Flute, he had staged a choreography for Kodály's Dances from Marosszék. 93 It was probably the success there and also Milloss's support that made Veress decide to seek for an opportunity to settle in Italy after his attempt in England proved a fiasco.

Yet, after returning from London, he tried to re-integrate himself into the Hungarian musical scene. On December 15, 1939, he was appointed an intern with college qualifications at the Academy of Music: 94 the term suggests that even in the case of this appointment the National Committee of Unemployed Graduates may have mediated in his employment, since he was only appointed as an honorary teacher for the 1941/1942 academic year for the elementary school singing teacher's course and for the secondary school singing teacher training course. 95 In general, his interest in pedagogy began to develop at that time, too: several of his articles on pedagogy appeared in music journals such as Énekszó and the Magyar Zenei Szemle [Hungarian Music Review], 96 and he also gave public lectures on the subject of music pedagogy. 97 Finally in 1942, following the death of Albert Siklós, when the teaching post at the composition department of the Academy of Music became vacant, Veress, who was by then appointed as a full professor, was regarded a possible successor. 98 Sándor Jemnitz, who had actually always supported him, described Veress as “not only a valuable and talented composer, but also a well-prepared theoretical musician and above all a serious and purposeful man who would be equipped with all the necessary pedagogical tools.” 99

Hardly had Northern Transylvania been annexed back to Hungary when Veress travelled to Transylvania, to Kolozsvár [today in Romania: Cluj-Napoca] and gave a lecture on folk music at the Transylvanian seminar organized by the Christian Women's Camp in October 1940. 100 A year later, it seemed possible that he should be director of the Kolozsvár Conservatory, replacing Rezső Zsizsmann. 101 He never forgot his Transylvanian roots: on November 13, 1943, he gave a concert with Végh in the King Matthias Student House in Kolozsvár, and on the next day, as an event of the music series of the Community Schools of the Transylvanian Hungarian Public Culture Association, he gave a lecture on Hungarian folk music. 102 In the same year, he also became a staff member of the Transylvanian Institute of Science, and in connection with this work he collected folk music in Borsavölgye [Râul Borșa, Romania]. 103

After his return from England, he travelled throughout the country and made several visits to the Allied countries; he was very eager to travel. But the war meant he could travel only to the Allied countries. He was constantly preoccupied with the idea of settling down in Rome. Already in February 1941 he returned to Italy to give several concerts with Végh. 104 On March 15, for example, he played his own works on the piano at a concert in the presence of the Hungarian ambassador to the Vatican, Frigyes Villani. 105 Eventually, he won the Collegium Hungaricum Rome scholarship in August 1941, the same year that Végh won a similar scholarship to Berlin. 106 According to his own recollections, he spent a year and a half in Rome as a resident of the Collegium Hungaricum. 107 Yet it seems he did not spend most of his time, at least the first six months, in Rome. This is suggested partly by the fact that he certainly returned home for the premiere of the Japanese Symphony in Budapest on October 10, 1941, and also by the fact that he played his own works at the Hungarian Protestant Literary Society's afternoon readings on October 28 108 and even gave a lecture on Hungarian folk music at the Komárom Art Weeks on December 17. 109 And he not only composed Térszili Katica which had been commissioned by Aurél Milloss and which represented the main purpose of his scholarship in Rome: he also wrote incidental music for the National Theater's dance fantasia Oedipus and for the Kolozsvár National Theater's production of Medea. 110 However, he cancelled his participation in the Berlin Congress of Composers organized by Richard Strauss in June, to which he had been invited together with Ferenc Farkas. 111

It is not certain that he cancelled this trip in precaution: it is more likely that he had been exceptionally busy with the score of Térszili Katica from March onwards. 112 Milloss had planned to premiere the ballet in December 1943; both Rome and Florence were considered as venues. 113 Curiously enough, however, the Budapest Opera House had already planned to present the ballet in the 1942/1943 season, with Milloss leading the rehearsals, but the performance was cancelled. 114 It was planned for the program of the following season, but apparently neither Milloss nor Veress was officially informed of the plan, and the composer published a statement of protest in the Magyar Nemzet. 115 In his biography, János Demény, referring to Veress's letters, says that Veress also had a conflict with the “cultural authorities” over the Opera House's boycotting of Milloss's invitation. 116 Veress's statement, however, seems more like a speech supporting Milloss, especially if one considers that the choreographer would have liked to return to Hungary, and yet Gyula Harangozó, who had to retire for a short time due to nervous exhaustion, was replaced not by him but by the Polish Jan Cieplinsky. 117 It is also possible that the composer and the choreographer held several irons in the fire regarding the venue. The chances of a premiere in Italy, first in Florence and then in Rome, were washed away by the American invasion which began in the autumn of 1943, 118 while the management of the Budapest Opera House may have had enough of the two authors' wrangling over the premiere.

Nevertheless, Veress continued to actively build his international career. In August 1943, he travelled to Salzburg to attend a master class at the Festival led by Clemens Krauss. 119 This was followed by the premiere of The Miraculous Flute 120 at the Prussian Theater in Gera at the end of September, and by a performance of the Violin Concerto by Végh with the Budapest Opera Orchestra conducted by Miklós Lukács at the Hungarian Week in Erfurt beginning on November 26, 1943. 121 Veress announced in the press that he would spend the academic year 1943/1944 in Rome, working as a Hungarian lecturer at the Santa Cecilia Accademia in the framework of a professorial exchange. 122 Later, answering a question from Demény, he tried to deny that he had been planning to do so. 123 However, it is clear from the statement that he did have such a plan, perhaps not independently of his hopes for the presentation of Térszili Katica. But the Hungarian ambassador in Rome pressed for the closure of the Collegium Hungaricum, and the Hungarians working there were ordered to leave the city. 124 It was certainly unrealistic for Veress to move to Rome during the final weeks of the war.

The legitimate question arises as to whether his decisions were influenced by political preferences in this period. In this respect, it is very telling that as early as 1940 he joined the then-formed Hungarian Musical Fellowship Association within the Turul Association, which aimed to establish and represent a new musical chamber in order to discriminate Jewish musicians. 125 It is possible that the article signed with the initials V. S. [i.e. Veress Sándor] in the Magyar Nemzet of January 8, 1939 urging the establishment of the musical chamber was written by Veress; shortly afterwards he signed another article appearing in the journal Énekszó in the same way. 126 Many members of the Fellowship Association had accompanied Veress throughout his career as colleagues or supporters: conductors such as Béla Csilléry, Béla Endre, János Ferencsik, Jenő Kenessey, who had performed his works, and the co-authors of the highly successful Hungarian Play of the Plays, Ferenc Farkas, Ferenc Ottó and Dénes Tóth. 127 Thus the musician association within the Turul Association was made up of the same musicians as those gathering around the Budapest Metropolitan Orchestra. Veress was still in contact with the Turul Association in 1944: on March 5 he performed as a pianist at a youth meeting in Hódmezővásárhely organized by the association. 128

His active participation in the Hungarian Musical Fellowship Association rightly raises the question whether he had any political beliefs which influenced his decisions. Apart from the newspaper articles advocating the establishment of a music chamber, his writings on music published in that period do not deal with political issues and are mainly concerned with music education and folk music. That is why his letters from London written simultaneously to his two masters, Bartók and Kodály, about the rise of national socialism in England are so valuable. These letters, however, do not reveal much about Veress's own political views, as their wording reveals that he was basically trying to suit the tastes of the two recipients.

When he learned that Bartók was planning to travel to America for an extended period, he wrote to him at length in a letter of June 18, 1939 about the dilemma he himself faced in choosing between Hungary and the West:

What will happen if individual freedom is taken away from man, which here – it must be granted – is fully enjoyed by all? What if man is reduced to a machine, a number and forced to wear a uniform with which he disagrees?! And more importantly, if they make it impossible for him to do helpful service? After all, there would be nothing wrong if one could do this service unhindered and wholeheartedly. But what will happen if these uncultured, treasonous outlaws take everything into their hands and make all constructive attempts impossible?

And then the greatest threat: the German occupation. … But in my mind, I had already somehow managed to accept the possibility of that. In any case, it will be good for one purpose: Hungarian unity will finally be created, as it has been so many times in our history. And we already have the experience of enduring the ravages of foreign rule. It is only tragic that such consolation should be sought in these fateful hours of the survival of the Hungarian nation. 129

Veress had a fairly accurate sense of the issues that Bartók must have been concerned with at the time, especially how a responsible intellectual should relate to the forces seeking power on the right edge of the political field, and how far he could go in cooperating with the “treasonous outlaws.” Veress could rightly assume that Bartók was possibly not far from a fatalistic view of history, which had matured in the wake of bitter experience and which saw the chance of achieving Hungarian unity in a possible German invasion. However, Veress wrote to Kodály on July 24, 1939 in a very different style and with a very different content. There is a certain ironic detachment in his letter, which also expresses a strong doubt about the cultural and political superiority of the British, and associates the advance of British extremeness with the image of the “twilight of the West,” which was so important to Kodály:

By the way, I have the feeling here that the poor Englanders have some real turmoil coming. The Berlin ghetto has settled on their neck and is slowly pulling the ground from under their feet – it will end up with fascism, too. Mosley, the fascist leader – of whom we’ll hear a lot in future – and his party, Action, is getting stronger day by day, and if they want to besiege this rotten pseudo-democracy in the grip of bankers, arms manufacturers, fox-hunting lords and corrupt politicians, I cannot help agreeing with him. I’ve seen quite a lot during the past half a year, and if I came here as the admirer of democracy, I’m surely leaving it completely disappointed – not in democracy as such but in what they have made of it. It’s pure swindle. … However, the foundations of their state organization have become rotten and another stratum of the population – the lords, junior officials and better-off proletarians – are degenerate on the one hand and uneducated and ignorant, on the other. … But a large portion of the urban population – tens of thousands – queue up for 3–4 hours outside the cinemas on Saturdays and Sundays to see a poor American movie and find their musical needs fulfilled by the horrors of cinema organs. Are they the ones who represent “public opinion?” Maybe they are – and that’s quite like Europe now. 130

Yet the critical thoughts expressed in the two letters are not the only documents reflecting Veress's search for his way out of the labyrinth of daily politics in Hungary. It is very likely that he consciously sought contact with all layers of Hungarian intellectuals, including the various left-wing opposition groups of the Horthy era. In 1935, for example, he published an article criticizing Richard Strauss and the “Aryan Festival” organized by the Germans in Vichy in the communist Lajos Kassák's newspaper Munka [Work], which was about the 13th festival of the International Society for New Music in Prague. 131 In 1938, he participated in the activities of the musical seminar led by János Bartók at the Hungarian Workers' Association, which had grown out of the Independent Stage, and gave a lecture on Hungarian folk song. 132 His 1937 collection in Dudar was carried out as a part of an international research project 133 organized by the Szeged Youth Art College, which had sociological interests. In 1942, he signed the appeal of the Hungarian Historical Memorial Committee initiated by Endre Bajcsy-Zsilinszky, which led to a large-scale demonstration by the opposition in Budapest on March 15. 134 István Raics also signed the same appeal, which is why three years later he was able to speak of Veress as an old, left-wing intellectual, as the communist expropriation of the Hungarian Historical Memorial Committee had already begun in 1945. 135

In an interview in July 1945, Veress said that the first performance of the Psalm of Saint Augustine had been scheduled for April 1944, but he had cancelled the premiere. 136 On June 26, however, he did attend an extraordinary general meeting of the Hungarian Composers, Lyricists and Music Publishers' Association, which voted to amend the statutes excluding Jews from membership in this authors' copyright association, and he even became a committee member. 137 If his attackers in 1946 had investigated this incident, they would have gained far more justification for accusing him of collaboration than in his inaugural speech at the Academy of Music addressing the issue of the ways in which new Hungarian music was developing. 138 The ceremonial opening of the academic year on September 28, 1944, at which Dénes Bartha, among others, gave a speech, and at which Dohnányi and Kodály were also present, was of no political significance whatsoever. But for Sándor Veress, who was leaving the uncertainties of his early career behind him, it symbolized a true career breakthrough, an even more important one than the premieres abroad of the Japanese Symphony or the Miraculous Flute.

Translated by Viktória KUSZ


See the chronology of Sándor Veress's career on <https://> (accessed on June 13, 2021).


N. N., “Megalakult a Magyar Művészeti Tanács” [The Hungarian Council of Arts has been established], Szabad Szó 47/13 (April 11, 1945), [2].


Veress compiled the list of members of the Confidential Committee together with Zoltán Vásárhelyi and Rezső Kókai. Eventually, Ferenc Gábriel became the chair of the Committee and Veress could become only a substitute member. N. N., “Nagy átszervezés a Zeneművészeti Főiskolán” [Huge reorganization at the Academy of Music], Népszava 73/133 (July 7, 1945), 5.


N. N., “Igazgatósági tanács létesült” [A Directorial Board has been established], Köznevelés 1/7 (October 1, 1945), 15.


N. N., “Nagy átszervezés…,” 5. Besides Veress, the members of the preparatory committee were Rezső Kókai, Endre Gaál, Artúr Harmat and Imre Waldbauer.


The program for the Bartók concert at the Music Academy on October 3, 1945 consisted of Bartók compositions: Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta, Dance Suite performed by the Budapest Metropolitan Orchestra conducted by László Somogyi, and folk song arrangements performed by Mária Basilides, Endre Rösler and Péter Solymos. See the Budapest Concerts Database (hereafter BCD) operated by the Archives for 20th-21st-Century Hungarian Music: ID_19666. The concert on October 6 in the Municipal Theater featured the premiere of Threnos, then still entitled Sirató ének [Lamentations], a work by Zoltán Kodály and a composition by Pál Kadosa (At the Martyrs Grave, Funeral Ode). These works were also performed by the Budapest Metropolitan Orchestra conducted by László Somogyi. BCD ID_20620.


N. N., “Bartók-akadémia alakul” [The Bartók Academy is being formed], Magyar Nemzet 1/132 (October 10, 1945), 2.


N. N., “Megalakult a Bartók-Akadémia” [The Bartók Academy has been founded], Szabad Nép 3/211 (December 8, 1945), 2. The Artistic Department had 24 full and 21 corresponding members, the Scholarly Department had 17 full and 18 corresponding members. Zoltán Kodály was elected honorary president, Sándor Jemnitz vice-president and Endre Gaál secretary general. After an initial boost, the Academy ceased to function. Officially registered on April 27, 1946, it was dissolved on October 13, 1949, two days before the execution of László Rajk. Budapest Capital Archives, Association Records and Documents, IV.1429. Veress had left Hungary by then. According to his recollections, the Rajk trial was the main reason for his emigration. See Sándor VERESS, “Önéletrajz. A Veress Sándorral készített interjúja alapján lejegyezte Bónis Ferenc (1985)” [Autobiography. Based on his interview with Sándor Veress, transcribed by Ferenc Bónis (1985)], in Veress Sándor (Tanulmányok, cikkek, beszédek) [Sándor Veress. Studies, articles, speeches] ed. by István CSICSERY-RÓNAY (Budapest: Occidental Press, 2007), 37.


According to the BCD, his works were performed from May 1945 onwards, and the press also reports on several events where the performance of a composition was possible in the framework of unconventional concerts. For example, on April 29, 1945, the Attila József Songs were performed in the Fillér Street headquarters of the Hungarian Communist Party in the Second District of Budapest, in the framework of an afternoon commemorating the poet Attila József. N. N., “József Attila-délután Budán” [Attila József afternoon in Buda], Szabad Szó 3/29 (April 28, 1945), 4.


On September 15, 1945, Veress signed the appeal of Hungarian artists for the end of the persecution of Hungarians in Slovakia, and submitted a proposal to the Arts Council to establish the Art Consumption and Economic Cooperative to solve the serious financial problems of Hungarian musicians. N. N., “A magyar művészek megrázó felhívása Európához a szlovákiai magyarüldözések megszüntetése érdekében” [A shocking appeal by Hungarian artists to Europe to end the persecution of Hungarians in Slovakia], Világosság 1/62 (September 15, 1945), 1; N. N., “Neves zeneszerzőink lyukas cipőben, kabát nélkül, korgó gyomorral fagyoskodnak. Magyar muzsikusok S.O.S.-kiálltása” [Our famous composers are freezing in leaky shoes, without coats, with churning stomachs. S.O.S. cry of Hungarian musicians], Szabad Nép 3/1919 (November 15, 1945), 2.


This is indicated by an interview given by Sándor Veress to the magazine Képes Világ in July 1945: CEDERBORG, “Veress Sándor József Attila verseket zenésített meg” [Sándor Veress has set Attila József's poems to music], Képes Világ 1/10 (July 20, 1945), [20]. The interview indicates that the premiere of the songs will take place on July 28 at a concert of the National Peasant Party for the benefit of the Dózsa Statue Fund. BCD ID_19619 The concert was performed by Magda B. László and Péter Solymos. Melinda Berlász's catalogue of Veress's works published in 1982 contains inaccurate information in this respect. Melinda BERLÁSZ, “Veress Sándor művei” [Sándor Veress's works], in Veress Sándor. Tanulmányok [Sándor Veress Studies] ed. by Melinda BERLÁSZ (Budapest: Zeneműkiadó, 1982), 167. It should be added that this was presumably not the premiere of the complete work. On the one hand, the cycle or some of its movements had already been performed at the aforementioned event of April 29 (see footnote 9), and on the other hand, a review of the National Peasant Party concert mentions that the work has been performed by Magda László before. N. N., “Zenei napló. Három mai magyar zeneszerző” [Musical Diary. Three contemporary Hungarian composers], Szabad Szó 47/124 (August 26, 1945), [4].


Rachel BECKLES WILLSON, “Veress and the Steam Locomotive in 1948,” in Sándor Veress. Komponist – Lehrer – Forscher. (= Schweizer Beiträge zur Musikforschung, vol. 11.), ed. by Doris LANZ and Anselm GERHARD (Kassel: Bärenreiter, 2008), 22 and 24.


István RAICS, “Adalékok a zenei őrségváltáshoz” [Information on the musical change of the guard], Demokrácia 4/7 (May 27, 1945), 4.


He also spoke of his anti-regime activities in a German-language autobiography of 1972, in which he said that in 1944 he had taken part in the underground movement against the Arrow Cross. Sándor VERESS, “Eine Selbstbiographie” [An autobiography], in Sándor VERESS, Aufsätze, Vorträge, Briefe, ed. by Andreas TRAUB (Hofheim: Wolke Verlag, 1998), 15.


The press attack can be read in the following articles: N. N., “A csellós beleszól. Az operaházi B-lista furcsaságai” [The cellist intervenes. The quirks of the Opera B-list], Kis Ujság 60/161 (July 20, 1946), [2]; N. N., “Bonyodalmak az operai és zeneakadémiai B-listázások körül” [Complications surrounding the B-listings at the opera and Music Academy], Világ 342 (July 20, 1946), [2]. Kodály's statement: N. N., “Zenebona az Operaház elbocsátott igazgatója körül. A magyar zeneélet megvédi a tisztogató bizottság szakszervezeti kiküldöttjét” [Music controversy over the dismissed director of the Opera House. The Hungarian music scene defends the trade union delegate of the cleansing committee], Szabad Nép 4/162 (July 21, 1946), 6. Mihály was also supported by Leó Weiner, Sándor Jemnitz, Pál Kadosa, Pál Járdányi and Ede Banda.


András Mihály's interview: “-csányi,” “Hogyan került B-listára Komáromy Pál? Oltványi Imre is aláírta az operaigazgató nyugdíjazását” [How did Pál Komáromy get on the B-list? Imre Oltványi also signed the retirement of the Opera director], Szabadság 2/162 (July 21, 1946), 5.


On the attack on Veress: Zoltán STÓB, “Kavarodás az operaházi B-lista körül“ [Confusion over the B-list at the Opera House], Magyar Nemzet 2/164 (July 26, 1946), 3. Articles defending Veress: N. N., “Elterelő támadások az Operaház elbocsátott igazgatója védelmére” [Distracting attacks in defence of the dismissed director of the Opera House], Szabad Nép 4/168 (July 28, 1946), 6; N. N., “Az offenziva” [The attack], Szabad Szó 48/162 (July 25, 1946), [2]. Due to pressure from the Ministry of Culture, Imre Oltványi, the chairman of the committee, resigned because of the attempts to remove Komáromy. Endre Gaál was appointed to replace Oltványi, but he could not even take up his post as chairman of the committee because he had also been placed on the B-list at the Academy of Music.


Magyar Nemzet columnist Zoltán Stób said that Veress gave his inaugural speech despite the fact that “his friends had warned him against it, because they had not wanted him, as a well-known composer, to strengthen the fascist tendency with his lecture.” The question is where Stób got his information. However, his credibility is undermined by the fact that he refers to András Mihály as being 23 years old, although he was 29 then. STÓB, “Kavarodás az operaházi B-lista körül,” 3.


The concert program made Veress a year younger. N. N., “Az Ébredők budai hangversenye” [The Buda concert of the Awakening Hungarians], Szózat 4/112 (May 17, 1922), 9.


János DEMÉNY, “Veress Sándor – életmű-vázlat” [A sketch of Sándor Veress's oeuvre], in Veress Sándor. Tanulmányok, ed. by BERLÁSZ, 13.


János DEMÉNY, “Veress Sándor négy levele Bartók Bélához” [Four letters by Sándor Veress to Béla Bartók], Jelenkor 24/3 (March 1981), 221–227. See also the introduction of the publication for information on the composer's family (p. 222). See also VERESS, “Önéletrajz,” 8; VERESS, “Eine Selbstbiographie,” 13; and on the Veress family estate, which was left to Endre Veress Junior, see the interview with him: Péter RUFFY, “Bujdosók levelei. Tizenháromezer kézirat egy pécsi magánlakásban” [Letters by people in hiding. Thirteen thousand manuscripts in a private home in Pécs], Magyar Nemzet 19/58 (March 10, 1963), 7.


The life of Mária Méhely, with special regard to the years of World War I and the years that followed, was researched by Eleonóra Géra on the basis of the correspondence of the Veress and Méhely families preserved in the Budapest Archives. This micro-, social- and women's history investigation provides a much more detailed picture than ever before of the social and material situation of the members of the Veress-Méhely family and their everyday life. Eleonóra GÉRA, “Egy fel nem fedezett művésznő a tudós férj árnyékában. Dr. Veress Endréné Méhely Mária története” [An undiscovered artist in the shadow of her scholar husband. The story of Mária Méhely-Veress], in A fordulat éve? Tanulmányok a Nagy Háborúról [The Year of the Turn? Studies on the Great War], ed. by Gábor EGRY and Eszter KABA (Budapest: Napvilág Kiadó, 2017), 195–227. On Endre Veress's retirement see p. 225.


GÉRA, “Egy fel nem fedezett,” 202–204, 217, and 224–225. In 1915 she wrote to his mother: “I am not afraid of any fatigue, of work, there is only one thing that could put an end to my dreams. And that is, if it turns out that my talent is not enough so that I can rise to the first rank. Then, yes – I'll give up my musical dreams. I can be just as good a wife to my husband, just as good a mother to my children, if I undertake a third task in addition to my two existing ones. You don't understand what it is to have the desire in you – to want to fly upwards, to soar, so that all of wretched mankind should admire us.” Ibid., 215.


And during World War I, the family organized house concerts in their summer house in Balatonszemes. GÉRA, “Egy fel nem fedezett,” 207.


The Méhelys moved to Hunfalvy Street after the early death of their son Kálmán (1924), when they could no longer afford the apartment they had rented together on Fő Street, overlooking the Danube. GÉRA, “Egy fel nem fedezett,” 226.


GÉRA, “Egy fel nem fedezett,” 224. It should be added that Mária Méhely constantly assisted her husband in his scholarly work, typed his manuscripts, compiled the indexes of the volumes, arranged the editions and corrected the proofs. Ibid., 205–206.


GÉRA, “Egy fel nem fedezett,” 215. The Veress family took out substantial loans in order to buy the house on Hunfalvy Street. Ibid., 218.


DEMÉNY, “Veress Sándor négy levele,” 222. Sándor VERESS, A magyar emigratio a keleten [Hungarian emigration in the East], 2 vols. (Budapest: Athenaeum, 1878).


RUFFY, “Bujdosók levelei,” 7.


Ibid. See also N. N., “Két romantikus életpálya. Veress Sándor centennáriumát Sarkadon és Bukaresten egyidőben ünnepelték” [Two romantic careers. The centenary of Sándor Veress was celebrated in Sarkad and Bucharest at the same time], Ellenzék 49/295 (December 24, 1928), 11. The 1928 commemoration in Sarkad presumably included a performance by the young Music Academy student Sándor Veress. Ferenc Veress's 15-year-old daughter, Zsófia, the sister of the emigrant Veress, killed a ruthless Russian soldier in Sarkad in 1849. N. N., “Aki a világosi fegyverletétel után megölte a kegyetlen muszka porkolábot” [The one who killed the cruel Muscovite soldier after the Armistice of Világos], Kis Ujság 43/8 (January 11, 1930), 3.


Mária Méhely was actively involved in the life of the Catholic faith: N. N., “Veress Endréné, dr.” [Mrs. Endre Veress], in A magyar feltámadás lexikona. A magyar legujabb kor története [The dictionary of the Hungarian revival. The history of the latest age of Hungary], ed. by Géza SZENTMIKLÓSSY (Budapest: A Magyar Feltámadás Lexikona, 1930), 1111.


GÉRA, “Egy fel nem fedezett,” 198.


János GYURGYÁK, Magyar fajvédők. Eszmetörténeti tanulmány [Hungarian race defenders. A study in the history of ideas] (Budapest: Osiris, 2012). The chapter on Lajos Méhely: pp. 87–101.


István PÁLFI, “Adalékok egy jogtipráshoz: Méhely Lajos bölcsészkari előterjesztése a numerus clausus ügyében” [Additions to a legal enforcement: the proposal of Lajos Méhely on the numerus clausus issue], Neveléstörténet 15/12 (2018), 32–46.


DEMÉNY, “Életmű-vázlat,” 13–14.


N. N., “A közgazdasági egyetem dékánja – Méhely Kálmán” [The Dean of the University of Economics – Kálmán Méhely], Világ 14/125 (June 6, 1923), 7.


VERESS, “Önéletrajz,” 28. On the employment of unemployed graduates, see Géza Paikert's contemporary study: PAIKERT, “Az ‘állástalan diplomások’ elhelyezési akciója” [The employment project of “unemployed graduates”], Magyar Szemle 23/1–4 (1935), 342–351.


At the turn of 1933–1934, the Bethlen Gábor Association performed in Debrecen, Pécs, Hódmezővásárhely, Eger and Nyíregyháza. The performers were always the same: Imre Csécsi Nagy, András Tasnádi Nagy, Zsolt Harsányi, Károly Szász and Ilona Szalay, accompanied by Veress. N. N., “A Bethlen-Gábor-szövetség debreceni ünnepe” [The Debrecen celebration of the Bethlen-Gábor Association], Magyarság 14/242 (October 24, 1933), 8; N. N., “Baltazár püspök a földi élet hívságairól. Az Országos Bethlen Gábor Szövetség kultur-ünnepélye” [Bishop Baltazár on the callings of life on earth. The cultural celebration of the National Bethlen Gábor Association], Pécsi Napló 42/275 (December 3, 1933), 4; N. N., “A Bethlen Gábor Szövetség hódmezővásárhelyi ünnepe” [The celebration of the Bethlen Gábor Association in Hódmezővásárhely], Pesti Hírlap 46/23 (January 30, 1934), 8; N. N., “Az Országos Bethlen Gábor-Szövetség kulturünnepélye Egerben és Nyíregyházán” [The Cultural Celebration of the National Bethlen Gábor Association in Eger and Nyíregyháza], Pesti Napló 56/42 (February 22, 1934), 11.


On the election, see N. N., “Pesthy Pál lemondott a Bethlen Gábor Szövetség elnökségéről” [Pál Pesthy resigns from the presidency of the Bethlen Gábor Association], Budapesti Hírlap 53/285 (December 16, 1933), 7. Tasnádi Nagy's sentence was eventually reduced to life imprisonment by the People's Court, and he died in 1966. N. N., “Tasnádi Nagy András” [András Tasnádi Nagy], in Magyar életrajzi lexikon, vol. 3: Kiegészítő kötet [Hungarian Biographical Encyclopedia, vol. 3: Supplementary volume] (Budapest: Akadémiai Kiadó, 1981), 781.


N. N., “Ravasz László püspök beszéde a reformáció emlékünnepén a protestantizmusról és a felekezeti békéről” [Speech of Bishop László Ravasz on Protestantism and inter-religious peace held at the commemoration of the Reformation], Magyarság 14/249 (November 3, 1933), 7.


According to Melinda Berlász's information based on Veress's memoirs, the young composer worked with Lajtha from 1927 (Melinda BERLÁSZ, “Veress Sándor – a népzenekutató” [Sándor Veress – the folk music researcher], in Veress Sándor, ed. by BERLÁSZ, 137), but the chronology of the Sándor Veress website, run by the composer's son, dates it to 1929, and the latter information seems more likely, as Veress set out to Moldau for his first large pioneering trip in 1930. (<https://>, accessed on June 13, 2021). On this trip, see Péter LAKI, “Sándor Veress als Ethnomusikologe. Die Moldau-Sammlung,” in LANZ and GERHARD (eds.), Sándor Veress, 189–203.


N. N., “Pesthy Pál lemondott,” 7.


N. N., “Nihon zsin to Hangari zsin to kyodaj desz – a japán ember, magyar ember, testvér. Báró Mitsui hetvenötezer pengős alapítványa a magyar-japán kapcsolatok kiépítésére” [Nihon jin to Hangari jin to kyodaj des – the Japanese man, Hungarian man, brother. Baron Mitsui's foundation of seventy-five thousand pengős to build Hungarian-Japanese relations], Pesti Napló 86/247 (October 29, 1935), 9.


N. N., “Magyar-japán kulturális kapcsolatok” [Hungarian-Japanese cultural relations], Külügyi Szemle 13/1 (January 1, 1936), 88–89; and Géza PAIKERT, “A japán-magyar kulturegyezmény és annak eddigi kihatásai” [The Japanese-Hungarian cultural agreement and its impacts so far], Külügyi Szemle 18/1 (January 1, 1941), 22–23.


Mitsui Takaharu was also a major contributor to the University of Vienna, where he helped to establish the Japanese Institute in 1938: <> (accessed on June 15, 2021).


Bálint HÓMAN, “Indoklás »a Budapesten, 1938. évi november hó 15. napján kelt magyar-japán barátsági és szellemi együttműködési egyezmény becikkelyezéséről« szóló törvényjavaslathoz” [Explanation to the Bill on the ratification of the Hungarian-Japanese Friendship and Intellectual Cooperation Agreement signed in Budapest on November 15, 1938], Külügyi Szemle 16/4 (October 10, 1939), 442.


N. N., “A magyar-japán kulturális kormánybizottság ülése” [The meeting of the Hungarian-Japanese Government Committee on Culture], Külügyi Szemle 18/5 (September 1, 1941), 483–484. The meeting took place on July 8, 1941, and it was reported that three Hungarian winners had been announced in a Japanese ethnomusico-cultural competition: in addition to Sándor Veress, István Benkő and Sándor Páli were named as winners. This information is obviously wrong. While Benkő and Páli did indeed participate in a competition for essayists, Veress's work took a completely different route to Japan. N. N., “A Kokusai Bunka Shinkokai pályázatának egyik nyertese: dr. Benkő István tagtársunk” [One of the winners of the Kokusai Bunka Shinkokai competition: our fellow member Dr. István Benkő], Turán. Magyar néprokonsági szemle 24/1 (May 1941), 52.


N. N., “Veress Sándor zeneszerző nyerte el a japán császári dinasztia uralkodásának jubileumi pályázatát” [Composer Sándor Veress wins the Japanese Imperial Dynasty's Jubilee Competition], Keleti Újság 23/49 (March 2, 1940), 5.


János DEMÉNY, “A folytatás. Veress Sándor útja” [The sequel. The journey of Sándor Veress], Sorsunk 4/7 (July 1944), 400.


János DEMÉNY, “Veress Sándor szimfóniája Japánban” [Sándor Veress's symphony in Japan], Magyar Út 10/24 (June 6, 1941), 3.


János FANCSALI, “Viski János, Kodály Zoltán magyar-örmény tanítványa” [János Viski, a Hungarian-Armenian student of Zoltán Kodály], Művelődés 70/10 (October 2017), 22–24.


N. N., “A Szent István oratórium-pályázat eredménye” [The result of the St Stephen's oratorio competition], Zene 20/16 (September 15, 1939), 292. Kókai was a member of the College Department of the Catholic Teaching Council: Magyarország tiszti cím- és névtára [Directory of the Officers of Hungary], 45 (1937), 318.


N. N., “Japán szimfónia” [Japanese Symphony], Nemzeti Ujság 23/230 (October 9, 1941), 9. The January date seems rather premature, given that the manuscript of the score gives January 10, 1940 and February 22, 1940 as the dates of composition. Tibor TALLIÁN, “Kortárs magyar zene a Székesfővárosi Zenekar műsorán” [Contemporary Hungarian Music on the Program of the Metropolitan Orchestra], in Magyar képek. Fejezetek a magyar zeneélet és zeneszerzés történetéből. 1940–1956 [Chapters from the history of Hungarian music and composition] by Tibor TALLIÁN (Budapest: Balassi Kiadó–MTA Bölcsészettudományi Kutatóközpont, 2014), 34. The news report appearing in Pesti Hírlap of February 29, 1940 might be closer to the date when the manuscript was transported to Japan. N. N., “Magyar szimfónia a japán császári dinasztia tiszteletére” [A Hungarian synphony in honor of the Emperor of Japan], Pesti Hírlap 62/48 (February 29, 1940), [9].


Thanks to Nakahara Yusuke for this information.


N. N., “Veress Sándor főiskolai tanár” [Sándor Veress college teacher], Magyar Nemzet 5/15 (January 20, 1942), 7; N. N., “Ekitai Ahn a japán zenei életről és Veress Sándor díjnyertes szimfóniájáról” [Ahn Eak-tai on Japanese musical life and Sándor Veress's prize-winning symphony], Függetlenség 9/231 (October 10, 1941), 7.


N. N., “Veress Sándor főiskolai tanár,” 27.


N. N., “Magyarország kormányzójának felajánlják a japán császárság 2600 éves fennállásának emlékére szerzett zeneművek lemezeit” [The Regent of Hungary is offered a donation of the music records of the 2600th anniversary of the Japanese Empire], Magyar Élet 3/27 (February 1, 1941), 6.


Endre SZERVÁNSZKY, “Veress Sándor. (Egy új magyar zeneszerző portréjának vázlata)” [Sándor Veress. (Sketch of a portrait of a new Hungarian composer)], Kelet Népe 7/20 (November 1, 1941), 16.


DEMÉNY, “Életmű-vázlat,” 27.


CEDERBORG, “Veress Sándor József Attila verseket zenésített meg,” [20].


BCD ID_5035. The concert also included Rossini's Semiramis Overture and Schubert's “Unfinished” Symphony.


SZERVÁNSZKY, “Veress Sándor,” 16. Sándor JEMNITZ, “Veress Sándor szimfóniája Ekitai Ahn hangversenyén” [Sándor Veress's symphony at Ahn Eki-tai's concert], Népszava 69/232 (October 12, 1941), 17.


Sándor JEMNITZ, “Két zenekari hangverseny” [Two orchestral concerts], Népszava 71/9 (January 13, 1943), 7. BCD ID_5243. Jemnitz claims the concert took place on January 11.


N. N., “A Tenno születésnapja a magyar rádióban” [Tenno's birthday on Hungarian radio], Esti Újság 8/95 (April 29, 1943), 4.


February 22. N. N., “Magyar művészek Rómában” [Hungarian artists in Rome], Nemzeti Ujság 23/45 (February 23, 1941), 13.


Melinda Berlász's catalogue of works (BERLÁSZ, “Veress művei,” 162.) gives only the date of November, not the day. Zsuzsa Kővágó, with her knowledge of the legacy of Aurél Milloss, fixes the date of the presentation as November 21. Zsuzsa KŐVÁGÓ, “Milloss Aurél szólóestjei és a Magyar Csupajáték” [Aurél Miloss's solo performances and the Hungarian Play of Plays], in Tánctudományi tanulmányok 1996–1997 [Essays in the Study of Dance] ed. by Zsuzsa KŐVÁGÓ (Budapest: Magyar Tánctudományi Társaság, 1997), 59. The contemporary Hungarian press, however, gives the date of November 23 as the date of the premiere. N. N., “Veress Sándor külföldi sikerei” [Sándor Veress's success abroad], Magyar Nemzet 3/252 (November 24, 1940), 15.


On January 16, 1931, the string trio performed in the Small Hall of the Music Academy, organized by Új Muzsika, and the concert included works by Ferenc Farkas, Pál Kadosa, György Ránki and Ferenc Szabó. BCD ID_155. On March 27 of the same year, at the Új Muzsika's second evening, Veress performed his own Piano Sonata, as well as works by Poulenc, Hindemith, Ferenc Farkas, Pál Kadosa, György Ránki and Ferenc Szabó. BCD ID_200.


N. N., “Magyar muzsikusok sikere a prágai nemzetköz zeneünnepélyen” [Success of Hungarian musicians at the Prague International Music Festival], Függetlenség 3/205 (September 10, 1935), 6; N. N., “Az Új Magyar Vonósnégyes bécsi sikere” [The New Hungarian String Quartet's success in Vienna], Népszava 64/46 (February 25, 1936), 4; N. N., “A modern magyar zene sikere” [The success of modern Hungarian music], Népszava 64/88 (April 17, 1936), 4; N. N., “Az Új magyar kvartett genfi sikere” [The success of the New Hungarian Quartet in Geneva], Magyarság 17/266 (November 20, 1936), 13; “J. S.” [Sándor JEMNITZ], “Az Új Magyar Zeneegyesület“ [The new Hungarian Music Association], Népszava 64/88 (April 17, 1936), 4; N. N., “Kamarazene” [Chamber Music], Népszava 65/289 (December 12, 1937), 4.


Veress himself felt it necessary to explain afterwards why he called this work the second sonata when there is no first sonata. He pointed out that it was Vilmos Palotai who had drawn his attention to the fact that he might as well have given his violin and piano sonatina of 1933 the title “sonata.” VERESS, “Önéletrajz,” 30–31.


N. N., “Veress Sándor és Végh Sándor a Velencei Biennálén” [Sándor Veress and Sándor Végh at the Venice Biennale], Népszava 70/200 (September 4, 1942), 4; László TÓTH, “Velencei mozaikok” [Mosaics of Venice], Új Nemzedék 20/210 (September 16, 1942), 5; see also the statement of Sándor Veress: N. N., “Öt új magyar zeneszerző” [Five new Hungarian composers], Újság 19/122 (May 30, 1943), 12. According to an interview, Veress and Végh came to Venice at the invitation of Goffredo Petrassi: Ella MEGYERY, “Értékes számomra a pesti siker – mondja Goffredo Petrassi olasz zeneszerző, kinek zsoltárát február 27-én mutatják be a fővárosban” [The success in Pest is precious to me, says the Italian composer Goffredo Petrassi, whose psalm will be premiered in the capital on February 27], Esti Újság 7/46 (February 26, 1942), 3. Both Berlász's catalogue and Demény's biographical summary erroneously date the performance to 1941: DEMÉNY, “Életmű-vázlat,” 26; BERLÁSZ, “Veress művei,” 165.


István SZENTHEGYI, “Új magyar zeneművek” [New Hungarian Compositions], Nemzeti Újság 26/118 (May 26, 1943), 9; Sándor JEMNITZ, “Új Magyar Zeneművek Hete” [The Week of New Hungarian Music], Népszava 71/118 (May 26, 1943), 6. See also TALLIÁN, “Kortárs magyar zene a Székesfővárosi Zenekar műsorán,” 28–37.


The first performance of the Aria: March 11, 1937, conducted by Jenő Kenessey, violin: Tivadar Országh, BCD ID_963; the first performance of the Nógrádi verbunk: November 11, 1939, violin: Sándor Végh, BCD ID_6607; the first performance of the Cuka-szőke Csárdás: June 8, 1940, conducted by Béla Csilléry, BCD ID_7066; the same concert also included the Nógrádi verbunk. Another performance of this was on January 18, 1941, conducted by Béla Csilléry, BCD ID_6734. The Divertimento was conducted by János Ferencsik on December 20 or 21, 1936: N. N., “Székesfővárosi hangverseny” [Concert in the Capital], Magyarság 17/292 (December 22, 1936), 12. Several concerts included a composition by Veress entitled Suite, but the premiere performance planned for May 12, 1942 conducted by Béla Csilléry was cancelled. The database lists the wrong information: BCD ID_7278) „D. T.” [Dénes TÓTH], “A Székesfővárosi Zenekar évadzáró estje” [The final evening of the season by the Metropolitan Orchestra], Esti Újság 6/103 (May 13, 1942), 8. The premiere of this “Suite” finally took place on June 16, 1941: conductor: Béla Csilléry, BCD ID_6778. This “Suite” was presumably the Nógrádi Verbunk, but it could also have been made from The Miraculous Flute, although the press refers to the premiere of this in Hungary as the evening of January 30, 1942 of the Budapest Metropolitan Orchestra conducted by Fernando Previtali. N. N., “Veress Sándor művét mutatja be Previtali” [Sándor Veress's work is presented by Previtali], Nemzeti Ujság 24/19 (January 24, 1942), 9. BCD ID_5133.


See, among others, the reviews of Sándor JEMNITZ, who supported Veress from the beginning: “Két zenekari hangverseny” [Two orchestral concerts], Népszava 71/9 (January 13, 1943), 7; “Új Magyar Zeneművek Hete” [New Hungarian Music Week], Népszava 71/118 (May 30, 1943), 10.


“b. j.,” “Zeneélet” [Musical Life], Kelet Népe 6/5 (March 1, 1940), 19.


BCD ID_5496. “v. l.” “Filharmóniai hangverseny” [Philharmonic concert], Pesti Hírlap 66/70 (March 28, 1944), 7.


Dénes TÓTH, “Csakugyan ‘sivár, csaknem vigasztalan’ az utolsó hat év zenei termése?” [Is the musical output of the last six years really ‘bleak, almost disconsolate?’], Függetlenség 10/8 (January 11, 1942), 7; Endre GAÁL, “Hamis szólamok a magyar zenekritikában” [False voices in Hungarian music criticism], Magyar Nemzet 5/58 (March 12, 1942), 9.


Sándor JEMNITZ, “Új Magyar Zeneművek Hete. III. est” [The Week of New Hungarian Music, evening 3], Népszava 71/122 (May 30, 1943), 10.


“E. G.” [Endre GAÁL], “Az új magyar zeneművészet hete” [The Week of New Hungarian Music], Magyar Nemzet 6/118 (May 26, 1943), 9.


The Seraphic Choir regularly sang Veress's Folk Song Suite based on Csángó folk songs: N. N., “Elutaztak Győrbe a pécsi dalosok” [The Pécs singers travelled to Győr], Pécsi Napló 49/140 (June 22, 1940), 3; N. N., “A Szeráfi kórus teaestje” [The Seraphic Choir's tea party], Pécsi Napló 60/39 (February 16, 1941), 2. The composition, written in 1933, was published in 1940 by the National Federation of Hungarian Singing Associations, as it was a compulsory piece for the 26th Győr National Singing Competition and Song Festival.


N. N., “Énekkari est” [Choral night], Nemzeti Ujság 22/115 (May 23, 1940), 9.


“T_th” [Aladár TÓTH], “A Szilágyi Erzsébet Leánygimnázium hangversenye” [The concert of the Erzsébet Szilágyi Girls' Secondary Grammar School], Pesti Napló 85/90 (April 22, 1934), 21. According to Aladár Tóth's review, the concert featured Moldavian Csángó folk and children's songs performed by the girls' choir of the school. The first and third series of the two- and three-part folk song arrangements listed in Veress's catalogue of 15 children's choruses (7 Csángó-Hungarian children's songs from Moldavia and 4 Csángó children's songs from Moldavia) mention folk music sources, but according to Melinda Berlász's catalogue of works, this series was written in 1936 (BERLÁSZ, “Veress művei,” 161–162.) The composition year 1936 is also given in the version of Veress's choral works published by Melinda Berlász in Sándor VERESS, Kórusművek [Choral compositions], vol. 1, ed. by Melinda BERLÁSZ (Budapest: EMB, 2007), xi.


“h. m.,” “Két cárnő. Eugen K. Ilin drámáját ma mutatja be a Nemzeti Színház” [Two Tsarinas. Eugen K. Ilyin's drama is being presented today at the National Theater], Esti Kurír 16/222 (October 2, 1938), [10]. Antal Németh, director of the National Theater, wanted to continue working with Veress. He asked him to write the dance score for The Tragedy of Man and the incidental music for Oedipus. Zoltán DEÁK, “Németh Antal tánckölteménnyé írja át Az ember tragédiáját. Beható szezonkezdeti beszélgetés a Nemzeti Színház igazgatójával” [Antal Németh rewrites The Tragedy of Man into a dance poem. An in-depth pre-season interview with the director of the National Theater], Film, Színház, Irodalom 4/41 (October 10, 1941), [8].


VERESS, “Önéletrajz,” 28.


The Hungarian Play of Plays, presented at the Művész Theater, was a great success, with a large number of reviews in the newspapers. Among others: “á. szp.,” “Magyar Csupajáték” [The Hungarian Play of Plays], Népszava 66/116 (May 22, 1938), 8; “i. f.,” “Magyar Csupajáték. A Művész Színház bemutatója” [The Hungarian Play of Plays. The premiere at the Művész Theater], Pesti Napló 89/116 (May 22, 1938), 19; “A. K.,” “Magyar csupajáték” [The Hungarian Play of Plays], Új Nemzedék 20/115 (May 22, 1938), 4.


Other parts of the Hungarian Play of Plays: Ferenc FARKAS, Béla PAULINI and Pál MOLNÁR C., Bethlehembe [To Bethlehem]; Gábor LISZNAY-SZABÓ, Béla PAULINI and Lóránt FÁY, Áspis vipera [Vipera Aspis]; Zoltán PONGRÁCZ, Elemér JÁSZAY HORVÁTH and Gitta MALLÁSZ, Vízdal [Water Song]; Ottó VINCZE, Béla PAULINI and Mátyás VARGHA, Patkó Bandi [Bandi Patkó]; Jenő KENESSEY, Béla PAULINI and Zoltán FÜLÖP, Enyim a vőlegény [The Groom is Mine]; Viktor LÁNYI, Béla PAULINI and István PEKÁRY, A rőzseszedő [The Firewood Collector]; Kálmán ANTOS and Aurél MILLOSS, Tizenkettő (Haláltánc) [Twelve (Dance of Death)]; György RÁNKI, Béla PAULINI and István SZŐNYI, A hó család [The Snow Family]. At the London performance, a rechoreographed version of Kodály's Intermezzo was performed instead of Kálmán Antos's Dance of Death. KŐVÁGÓ, “Millos Aurél szólóestjei,” 59.


Ibid., 57–58.


Zsuzsa KŐVÁGÓ, “A Magyar Csupajáték története dokumentumok tükrében. Válogatás Bordy Bella hagyatékából” [The history of the Hungarian Play of Plays in the light of documents. A selection from the legacy of Bella Bordy], in Színháztudományi Szemle, vol. 20 (1986), 37.


N. N., “Veress Sándor külföldi sikerei” [The successes of Sándor Veress abroad], Magyar Nemzet 2/148 (July 2, 1939), 25.


DEMÉNY, “Veress négy levele,” 224. Veress refers here to the fact that he is certainly planning to return to Budapest by the summer, and leaves the question open as to whether he will stay at home or return to London in the autumn (letter of May 6, 1939). He is more precise in his letter written to Kodály: Melinda BERLÁSZ, “The Correspondence between Zoltán Kodály and Sándor Veress (1930–1967),” in LANZ and GERHARD (eds.), Sándor Veress, 31. (Letter of July 24, 1939.)


VERESS, “Önéletrajz,” 29; VERESS, “Eine Selbstbiographie,” 15.


“Hawkes has pulled himself at last and given me a three-year contract,” he wrote to Kodály in the letter I mentioned above. BERLÁSZ, “The Correspondence of Kodály and Veress,” 231.


KŐVÁGÓ, “A Magyar Csupajáték,” 37.


See the interview with Milloss: Ella MEGYERY, “Magyar koreográfus, rendező és szólótáncos nevéhez fűződik az olasz balett németországi sikere. Beszélgetés Milloss Auréllal a Termini pályaudvaron” [A Hungarian choreographer, director and solo dancer is credited with the success of Italian ballet in Germany. Interview with Aurel Milloss at the Termini station], Esti Ujság 6/232 (October 10, 1941), 3.


Hivatalos Közlöny 47/24 (December 15, 1939), 473.


Kálmán ISOZ (ed.), A Királyi Liszt Ferenc Zeneművészeti Főiskola Évkönyve az 1941/1942-es tanévre [The Yearbook of the Royal Liszt Academy of Music for the academic year 1941/1942] (Budapest: Orsz. M. Kir. Liszt Ferenc Zeneművészeti Főiskola, 1942), 36. He was not at the academy during that year, as he had won the scholarship of the Collegium Hungaricum in Rome for that year. It is also known that he was still working in this department in January 1942: N. N., “A Zeneművészeti Főiskola” [The Academy of Music], Magyar Nemzet 5/6 (January 20, 1942), 7.


For his early publications see Melinda BERLÁSZ, “Veress művei,” 175–176.


In October 1940, for example, he gave a lecture at the Pedagogical Seminar of the Magyar Zenei Szemle on Folk Music in Music Teaching. Magyar Országos Tudósító 23/262 (October 1, 1940), 9.


He was appointed to a full-time teacher's position in February 1942, in pay grade IX: Hivatalos Közlöny 50/3 (February 1, 1942), 88. He was upgraded to category VII two years later. Hivatalos Közlöny 52/3 (February 2, 1944), 42. Albert Siklós died on April 3, 1942, and Kodály taught his students until the end of the school year. László EŐSZE, Kodály Zoltán életének krónikája [Life chronicles of Zoltán Kodály] (Budapest: Zeneműkiadó, 1977), 184. This brief substitution may certainly explain why Veress, in his memoirs, says that he took Kodály's place in the composition department of the Liszt Academy (VERESS, “Eine Selbstbiographie,” 15). However, Kodály was no longer officially teaching composition at the Liszt Academy at this time, since after Bartók's departure to the USA in November 1940 he was working at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences on the systematization of the folk music collection. EŐSZE, Kodály Zoltán életének krónikája, 177. Veress took over Siklós's position.


N. N., “Művészet, Irodalom, Tudomány” [Art, Literature, Science], Népszava 70/81 (April 11, 1942), 6. This short article, as the style and knowledgeability of the writing suggests, was most probably written by Sándor Jemnitz, music critic of Népszava.


Lili MARTON, “Az egész visszakerült erdélyi területet beszervezték az Egyesült Női Tábor tevékeny vezetői” [The whole of the reclaimed Transylvanian territory was recruited by the active leaders of the United Women's Camp], Ellenzék 61/242 (October 22, 1940), 2.


N. N., “A kolozsvári zeneakadémia igazgató-jelöltjei” [Candidates for the directorship of the Kolozsvár Academy of Music], Magyar Nemzet 4/237 (October 17, 1941), 6. The other candidate for this post was János Viski, also of Transylvanian origin.


Béla KÉKI, “Végh Sándor és Veress Sándor hangversenye” [Concert by Sándor Végh and Sándor Veress], Ellenzék 64/258 (November 15, 1943), 3. Béla Kéki also conducted an interview with the two artists on this occasion: “b k” [Béla KÉKI], “Beszélgetés Végh Sándorral és Veress Sándorral külföldi hangversenyekről, magyar sikerekről, tervekről és reményekről” [A conversation with Sándor Végh and Sándor Veress about concerts abroad, Hungarian successes, plans and hopes], Ellenzék 64/260 (November 17, 1943), 3. The program included Veress's Sonata for Violin and Piano; Hungarian contemporary music including Ferenc Farkas's Hétfalusi Csángó Dance, Kodály's Adagio, and a selection of folk song arrangements by Bartók, as well as Rhapsody no. 1. N. N., “Két fiatal művész kolozsvári hangversenye” [Concert of two young artists in Kolozsvár], Keleti Ujság 23/255 (November 11, 1943), 5.


N. N., “Az erdélyi románok a régi magyar népviseletet, építkezési formát és népdalköltészetet vették át. Az Erdélyi Tudományos Intézet néprajzi munkásságának megállapításai. Hogyan történt az erdélyi román település?” [The Transylvanian Romanians adopted the old Hungarian folk costumes, building form and folk song poetry. The findings of the ethnographic work of the Transylvanian Scientific Institute. How did the Transylvanian Romanian settlement happen?], Ellenzék 64/269 (November 27, 1943), 3.


In addition to Rome, they gave concerts in Venice, Bolzano and Modena. N. N., “Végh Sándor hegedűművész” [Sándor Végh violinist], Film, Színház, Irodalom 4/9 (February 28, 1941), [12].


N. N., “Március 15-i ünnepségek külföldön” [March 15 celebrations abroad], Külügyi Szemle 18/3 (May 1, 1941), 280.


Hivatalos Közlöny 49/17 (August 15, 1941), 474.


DEMÉNY, “Életmű-vázlat,” 29.


N. N., “A Protestáns Napok keddi eseményei” [Tuesday's events of the Protestant Days], Magyar Nemzet 4/247 (October 29, 1941), 6. Veress cooperated with the Protestant Literary Society as closely as with the Gábor Bethlen Association, and the activities of the society were partly directed by the same people: András Tasnádi Nagy and Bishop László Révész. The Goudimel Choir, conducted by Veress, also took part in their performances. “e,” “Protestáns irodalmi est” [Protestant Literary Evening], Magyarság 1/7 (January 10, 1937), 19.


N. N., “Művészeti hetek Komáromban” [Art weeks in Komárom], Új Magyarság 8/280 (December 7, 1941), 21.


N. N., “Medea Kolozsvárott” [Medea in Kolozsvár], Ujság 18/73 (March 31, 1942), 8.


N. N., “Farkas Ferenc a zeneszerzők berlini kongresszusán” [Ferenc Farkas at the Berlin Congress of Composers], Új Magyarság 9/133 (June 14, 1942), 13. Ferenc Farkas gave an interview about the event to Dénes Tóth, in which he said that Veress had not attended the event because of “travel difficulties.” However, travelling between the Allied states in 1942 was not yet difficult. “T. D.” [Dénes TÓTH], “Farkas Ferenc beszámolója a zeneszerzők Berlinben megtartott kongresszusáról” [Ferenc Farkas's report on the composers' congress in Berlin], Esti Újság 7/144 (June 27, 1942), [8].


Melinda Berlász's catalogue places the period of composition between March 1942 and March 1943. BERLÁSZ, “Veress művei,” 166.


DEMÉNY, “Életmű-vázlat,” 29–30.


N. N., “Teljes erővel folynak a próbák az Operaházban” [Rehearsals are in full swing at the Opera House], Esti Újság 7/205 (September 10, 1942), [6].


N. N., “Bonyodalmak a ‘Térszili Katica’ balett körül az Operaházban” [Complications around the ballet ‘Térszili Katica’ at the Opera House], Magyar Nemzet 6/206 (September 12, 1943), 15.


DEMÉNY, “Életmű-vázlat,” 29–30. Demény's use of the term “cultural authorities” is rather typical of the cultural politics of the 1950s.


N. N., “Teljes erővel folynak a próbák az Operaházban,” 15.


In September 1943, Milloss made it clear that the original plan was to stage the ballet in Florence, but as many of the opera houses in Italy had been damaged, and only the Rome Opera, La Fenice in Venice and Teatro Verdi in Trieste were in a condition ideal to stage the work, the only place where Térszili Katica was to be performed was in Rome. N. N., “A ‘Térszíni [sic] Katica’ a római operában” [The Térszíni [sic] Katica in the opera in Rome], Esti Újság 8/203 (September 9, 1943), [6].


N. N., “Élénk zenei élet Salzburgban” [A lively musical life in Salzburg], Függetlenség 11/188 (August 20, 1943), 6. In addition to Veress, Béla Endre, János Eördögh, Emil Laskó and Isoz Kalmán took part in the course, and Béla Csilléry spent ten days in the city.


N. N., “Veress Sándor balettje Gerában” [Ballet by Sándor Veress in Gera], Pesti Hírlap 64/224 (October 3, 1942), 8.


N. N., “Magyar Művészeti Hét Erfurtban” [Hungarian Art Week in Erfurt], Függetlenség 11/231 (October 13, 1943), 8; Ferenc MIKES, “Magyar hetet rendez Erfurt, a dómok, virágok és Luther-emlékek ezerkétszázéves városa” [Hungarian Week held in Erfurt, the thousand and two hundred-year-old city of cathedrals, flowers and Luther monuments], Új Magyarság 10/257 (November 13, 1943), 10.


N. N., “Öt új magyar zeneszerző,” 12. “In the autumn I will move to Rome for an extended period, where I will be appointed music lecturer … , teaching Hungarian folk music and music history.”


DEMÉNY, “Életmű-vázlat,” 28–29.


From June 1, 1943, the payments of scholarships for the residents of the Collegium Hungaricum were stopped, in the summer of 1943 the entire cultural representation was ordered home by the Roman ambassador, and at the end of 1943 the ceiling of the Palazzo Falconieri collapsed. Gábor UJVÁRY, “Sok-sok út vezet Rómába. A Római Magyar Intézet története 1895–1945” [Very many roads lead to Rome. History of the Hungarian Institute in Rome 1895–1945], Iskolakultúra (June–August 1996), 73.


N. N., “A Turul Szövetség zenekamara-tervezete” [The Turul Association's plan of a musical chamber], Nemzeti Újság 22/248 (October 30, 1940), 9. See my study on this subject, “A Turultól a népdalig. A szélsőjobboldali mozgalmak és a magyar zeneélet kapcsolatai (1938–1944)” [From Turul to Folk Song. Relations between the extreme right-wing movements and Hungarian musical life (1938–1944)], in Járdányi Pál és kora. Tanulmányok a 20. századi magyar zene történetéből (1920–1966) [Pál Járdányi and his era. Studies about the history of 20th-century Hungarian music (1920–1966)] ed. by Anna DALOS and Viktória OZSVÁRT (Budapest: Rózsavölgyi és Társa Kiadó, 2020), 271–287.


“V. S.” [Sándor VERESS], “Európai nevű művészek és zeneakadémiai tanárok – a segédszemélyzet szakcsoportjában. Sürgősen állítsák fel a zenészkamarát” [Europe-wide well-known artists and music academy teachers – in the service staff section. A musical chamber should be established as soon as possible], Magyar Nemzet 2/6 (January 8, 1939), 23. “V. S.” [Sándor VERESS], “Angol lapszemle” [Review of English Journals], Énekszó 7/6 (42) (May–June 1940), 739–741.


On the members, see N. N., “Megalakult a Turul ‘Magyar Muzsika’ Bajtársi Egyesülete” [The Hungarian Musical Fellowship Association of the Turul Association was founded], Új Magyarság 6/241 (October 22, 1939), 8. In the course of the proceedings of the certification committee in 1945, Veress denied any knowledge of the activities of the Hungarian Musical Fellowship Association within the Turul Association. Given the facts, it is not the denial that is most surprising but the fact that everyone believed what he said. The case of Ernő Dániel's certification. Minutes of February 9, 1946. Testimony by Sándor Veress HU_BFL_XVII_1518_1945.


N. N., “Nagyszabású Kossuth-ünnepséggel zárult a hódmezővásárhelyi Turul-találkozó” [The Turul meeting in Hódmezővásárhely ended with a grand Kossuth celebration], Új Magyarság 11/55 (March 8, 1944), 4.


DEMÉNY, “Veress négy levele,” 224.


BERLÁSZ, “The Correspondence of Kodály and Veress,” 231–232.


Sándor VERESS, “A XIII. nemzetközi zeneünnepély” [The 13th International Music Festival], Munka 7/45 (October 1, 1935), 1371–1372.


The Hungarian Workers' Association was founded by Ferenc Hont, the founder of the Szeged Open-Air Festival, in order to ensure that the Independent Stage would be financed by the public as shareholders: “–nde,” “Nagyszabású szinházi szövetkezet indul őszre Budapesten. Hont Ferenc Független Szinpada Magyar Munkaközösség néven szövetkezetté alakult. Színház, ahol a néző üzlettárs” [A large-scale theatrical co-operative is to be launched in Budapest in the autumn. Ferenc Hont's Independent Stage has been formed as a cooperative under the name of the Hungarian Workers' Association. A theater where the audience is a partner], Esti Kurír 16/195 (August 31, 1938), [10].


The collection was published in the Szeged Calendar in 1938, with wooden sketches by the founder and head of the College of Arts, György Buday. On the College and the “agrarian settlement movement” based on English models, see László KÓSA, “Szegedi Fiatalok Művészeti Mozgalma” [The Art Movement of Szeged Youth], in Magyar Néprajzi Lexikon [Lexicon of Hungarian Ethnography], vol. 4, ed. by Gyula ORTUTAY (Budapest: Akadémiai Kiadó, 1981), 570–571. The establishment of the College was initiated by the Gábor Bethlen Circle of the University of Szeged, which united the Reformed students. On the founder György Buday and the Reformed background of the College, see also András LENGYEL, “Buday György és Szeged” [György Buday and Szeged], Csongrád Megyei Hírlap 26/268 (November 15, 1981), 6. The Dudar research camp was created after Buday's departure from Szeged as the last major project of the College.


“A Magyar Történelmi Emlékbizottság felhívása” [Appeal of the Hungarian Historical Memorial Committee], Magyar Nemzet 5/49 (March 1, 1942), 4. The signatories were: Endre Bajcsy-Zsilinszky, István Barankovics, Aurél Bernát, József Darvas, Zoltán Gáspár, Aladár Huszár Baráti, Gyula Illyés, Tibor Joó, Gyula Kállai, Aurél Kárpáti, János Katona, Imre Kovács, Miklós Krenner (Spectator), Ernő Mihályfi, Ferenc Nagy, István Nagy, György Nagy, György Parragi, Pál Pátzay, István Raics, Miklós Somogyi, Árpád Szakasits, Jenő Szentimrei, István Szőnyi, Zoltán Tildy, Béla Varga, Péter Veres, and Sándor Veress. See also András SZÉCHY, “’Szükség van az egész társadalom megmozdulására…’ 60 éve alakult meg a Magyar Történelmi Emlékbizottság” [“We need the whole of society to move…” The Hungarian Historical Memorial Committee was established 60 years ago], Ezredvég 12/4 (April 2002), 56–61.


N. N., “A ‘Történelmi Emlékbizottság’ szervezője. Dr. Földes Ferenc” [Organizer of the “Historical Memorial Committee, Dr. Ferenc Földes,” in A magyar szabadságért. A Magyar Kommunista Párt vértanúi [For Hungarian freedom. Martyrs of the Hungarian Communist Party] (Budapest: Szikra, 1946), 112–113.


CEDERBORG, “Veress Sándor József Attila verseket zenésített meg”, [20]. In October 1943, the Budapest Metropolitan Orchestra did indeed announce the work as one of the premieres of the season, conducted by the composer. N. N., “Huszonnégy hangversenyt hirdet a Székesfővárosi Zenekar érdekes és változatos műsorral” [Twenty-four concerts are advertised by the Metropolitan Orchestra with an interesting and varied program], Függetlenség 11/233 (October 15, 1943), 7.


N. N., “Új tisztikart választott a Zeneszerzők Szövetkezete” [The Composers' Cooperative has elected a new management], Függetlenség 12/144 (June 28, 1944), 6. The board of directors includes Jenő Ádám, Mihály Eisemann, Rezső Kókai and Imre Stefániai; among the better-known musicians: Szabolcs Fényes, Dénes Tóth and Lajos Rajter became members of the supervisory board; Ferenc Farkas and Miklós Laurisin were members of the pension committee. Lajos Bárdos and Ferenc Ottó were elected as substitute members.


N. N., “Ünnepélyes keretek között” [In a festive ceremony], Pesti Hírlap 66/221 (September 29, 1944), 8.

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Senior editors

Editor(s)-in-Chief: Péter BOZÓ (Institute for Musicology, Research Centre for the Humanities, Budapest, H)

Review Editor: Lynn HOOKER (Purdue University, West Lafayette, USA)

Assistant Editor(s):
Patrick DEVINE (Maynooth University, Maynooth, IRL)
Anna LASKAI (Institute for Musicology, Research Centre for the Humanities, Budapest, H)

Editorial Board

  • Anja BUNZEL (Institute of Art History, Czech Academy of Sciences, CZ)
  • William A. EVERETT (Conservatory University of Missouri-Kansas City, USA)
  • Márta GRABÓCZ (University of Strasbourg, Strasbourg, F)
  • Denis HERLIN (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris, F)
  • Vjera KATALINIĆ (HR)
  • Katalin KOMLÓS (professor emerita, Liszt Academy of Music, Budapest, H)
  • Valeria LUCENTINI (University of Bern, CH)
  • Tatjana MARKOVIĆ (Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften, Wien, A)
  • Pál RICHTER (Institute for Musicology, Research Centre for the Humanities, Budapest, H)
  • László SOMFAI (Institute for Musicology, Research Centre for the Humanities, Budapest, H)
  • László VIKÁRIUS (Institute for Musicology, Research Centre for the Humanities, Budapest, H)


Editorial Secretary

  • István Csaba NÉMETH (Institute for Musicology, Research Centre for the Humanities, Budapest, H)

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Studia Musicologica
Language English
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2007 (1961)
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Founder Magyar Tudományos Akadémia
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