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

Sir Georg Solti

Nearly two hundred applicants at this year's Éva Marton International Singing Competition

23 May 2024

A total of 106 female and 90 male singers from thirty-two countries around the world submitted valid applications for Liszt Academy's competition, which offers prizes amounting to 70,000 euros.

Young singers could apply for the prestigious event, which has a decade-long history, by submitting a video recording of a freely chosen aria, oratorio, or cantata excerpt from the Baroque period and one from another era. The largest groups by nationality are Koreans with 44 participants, followed by 30 Chinese, 18 Russians, 18 Hungarians, and 10 Ukrainians.

Numerous applications were also submitted by citizens of the United States, Germany, Kazakhstan, and Croatia, as well as the Republic of South Africa, Canada, Brazil, Australia, and Thailand. In terms of voice types, the applicants include 81 sopranos, 40 baritones, 24 tenors, 19 mezzo-sopranos, 13 baritone/bass-baritones, 7 basses, 5 mezzo-soprano/altos, 5 countertenors, 1 alto, and 1 tenor/countertenor.

Of the 196 singers, 36 are returning contestants, six of whom are participating for the third time. In the most recent, fifth competition held in 2022, there were 132 applicants and 19 returning participants.

The preliminary jury, led by Professor emerita Ks. Éva Marton, will decide in the coming weeks who will advance to the live rounds held from September 1 to 8. The selection results will be published by the Liszt Academy at the beginning of June on the competition's website, martoncompetition.hu, and the contestants will also be notified by email.

The competition organized with the support of the MOL – New Europe Foundation and the National Cultural Fund of Hungary, will feature an international jury chaired by Professor emerita Éva Marton. The prestigious panel includes Hungarian and international luminaries of the opera world: Miguel Lerín, one of the most influential Spanish artistic managers; Peter Mario Katona, the casting director of the Royal Opera House in London; Anatoli Goussev, a Ukraine-born tenor and vocal coach living and working in Italy; Christina Scheppelmann, a German music manager who was the former artistic director of the Liceu Opera House in Barcelona and is currently the general director of the Seattle Opera; Vittorio Terranova, an Italian tenor; Dmitrij Vdovin, the director of the youth opera program at the Bolshoi Theatre; Andrea Meláth, a mezzo-soprano and head of the Vocal Department at the Liszt Academy; and Szilveszter Ókovács, the general director of the Hungarian State Opera House.