Contestant 6: Gàbor Farkas
Ever since Béla Bartók, Hungary has made huge contributions to musical history. Gábor Farkas aims to continue this proud tradition.
Gábor Farkas (1981) began his musical studies at the age of 5, and now holds an MA degree in piano performance and teaching from Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music, Budapest, having been guided by Sándor Falvai and Attila Némethy. At present he is a DLA student at the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music, Budapest, under Zoltán Kocsis and Tamás Vásáry, and also a student of Prof. William Grant Naboré at the International Piano Academy Lake Como in Italy.
Farkas’ special talent is appreciated internationally, something his many prize awards firmly proves: In 2009, he won the “6th International Liszt Piano Competition in Weimar” and the “Audience’s Prize”, and an award for best performance of Haydn Sonata. In 2003 he received the 1st prize of the “Hungarian National Radio’s Piano Competition”, in 2001 he received 3rd prize in the International Liszt Piano Competition in Budapest. In 2000 he was the winner of the “Bartók Béla Piano Competition” in Baden bei Wien.
In May 2009 he received the “Gundel Art Prize”, the previous year he was given the “Prima Junior” prize; “The Best Young Artist of the Year”, special prize handed out by the State. In 2012 he received the Franz Liszt Award, which is the highest Hungarian State Award for artists.
His uplifting performance has enchanted the audience throughout Europe and the world: along the past years he performed in the concert halls of Hungary, Vienna, Berlin, Madrid, Rome, Venice, Paris, London, Helsinki, Calgary, Phoenix, Tokyo, Seoul, Beijing, Weimar and Bayreuth. He gave many solo recitals as the performer of the International Liszt Night Tour in Europe and Asia in 2011, and was invited to prestigious international festivals such as the Budapest Spring Festival; the International Piano Forum, Berlin; Schumann Festival, Zwickau; Dorset Music Festival, England and the Ferenc Liszt Festival in the Castle of Gödöll?, Hungary.
In January 2011, he was the soloist of the Official Opening Concert of the Liszt Year 2011, with Zoltán Kocsis conducting the National Philharmonic Orchestra at the Palace of Arts, Budapest. He was also the soloist of the Closing Concert of the Chopin Year in 2010, with the Sinfonia Warsovia in Budapest. So far, he has worked with such world-wide known conductors as Ádám Fischer , Tamás Vásáry, Olli Mustonen, Philippe Bender and George Tchitchinadze.
In the past years, Gabor has received the scholarships “Pro Europe” and “Ferenc Liszt” in Budapest; and in 2001 he won the scholarship of the “European Cultural Foundation” in Strasbourg.
He has also been guest professor of the Seoul Hansei University in 2006, and is currently assistant professor at the Liszt Academy of Music in Budapest.
His debut CD recording entitled „An evening with Liszt” was published by Warner Music in November 2008, which won the prestigious “Grand Prix” as the best Liszt recording of the year 2009, an award given by the Franz Liszt International Society. His second album was a live recording of the Official Opening Concert of the Liszt Year, 2011, with Zoltán Kocsis and the Hungarian National Philharmonic Orchestra, published also by Warner Music in July 2011.
Here’s a clip of Gábor Farkas performing Liszt “Les jeux d’eau a la Villa d’Este”.