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Zoltan Kodaly

Zoltan Kodaly was a brilliant and prominent composer from Hungary. Aside from composing music, Kodaly was also a music critic and an ethno-musicologist. Famous as one of the major Hungarian composers in twentieth century music, Kodaly was born December 16, 1882. As a child, he showed creative and virtuoso abilities as he played the violin. He died March 6, 1967, and left behind what is considered to many as some of the most beautiful compositions to man.

Facts about Zoltan Kodaly:

  • Zoltan’s father was a state railways employee as a stationmaster, but also provided a musical atmosphere and environment to Kodaly as he was a violinist. Zoltan’s mother contributed by performing on the piano.
  • Kodaly is considered a prominent figure in influencing the spread of musical education in Hungary. He heavily encouraged musical lessons and teaching in schools in order to pass along a higher understanding of music.
  • Kodaly implemented folk songs in his teachings, often having young students and children practice sight singing.
  • Zoltan is still to this day considered to be one of the most noteworthy figures in the Hungarian Arts.
  • Zoltan knew how to play an array of instruments; piano, violin, cello, and viola. He even participated in his father’s quartet playing on the cello.
  • In ceremony of combining Buda and Pest as the capital of Hungary, Kodaly composed his famous Psalmus Hungaricus, which was performed by several famous conductors, even branching out to America in its performance.
  • Kodaly was inspired by Hungarian folk music. In fact, aside from the lessons of sight singing, Kodaly’s adoration for the music can also be felt in his style. While his music style is quite romantic at points, the sound is much less percussive. Many people state that that sort of sound was derived from folk music of Hungary.
  • Zoltan retired at the ripe age of 60, in 1942. Following this, he traveled across the world touring and acting as a conductor of his workers.
  • Kodaly was not only a brilliant musician, but he was also a brilliant mind. In 1906, he was granted his Ph.D. for a structural analysis on Hungarian Folk Songs.

Zoltan Kodaly was a brilliant musician and a brilliant mind which influenced the art of music in many positive ways, and still does to this very day. Kodaly was the creator of this Kodaly method of musical education, and achieved many countless accomplishments in his personal and professional life. Even as time passes, Kodaly has left a lasting impression in not only Hungarian music, but music and musical applications across the world.

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