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Endre Szervánszky
1911 - 1977
E. Szervánszky
Endre Szervánszky (27/12/1911 - 25/06/1977), a Hungarian composer; born in Kistétény, died in Budapest. Szervánszky studied the clarinet at the Budapest Academy of Music (1922–7). He played in various orchestras before returning to the academy to study composition with Albert Siklós (1931–6). He then worked as an orchestrator for the Hungarian Radio and taught musical theory. He was appointed professor of composition at the Budapest Academy in 1948. Szervánszky first came to public attention with his First String Quartet (1936–8) and his works of this period were influenced by his compatriots, Zoltán Kodály and Béla Bartók. Works for this time include the Clarinet Serenade (1950) and the Flute Concerto (1952–3). From the early 1950s Szervánszky embarked on a series of larger compositions, one of the longest being the Concerto for Orchestra in memory of Attila József. Each of the concerto’s five movements is based on a quotation from József. The fourth has folk music elements and the whole demonstrates the influence of Bartók. Both the String Quartet no.2 (1956–7) and the Wind Quintet no.2 (1957) also demonstrate the composer’s increasing interest in serialism. For his Six Orchestra Pieces, composed in 1959, Szervánszky employed 12-note serialism and the piece is particular in its use of percussion. Szervánszky did not compose another major work until 1963 – the oratorio Requiem, based on a text by János Pilinszky which takes the concentration camp of Auschwitz as its theme. Works which followed include the Variations (1964) and the Clarinet Concerto (1965). Endre Szervánszky was given the "Righteous among the Nations" award by the State of Israel to honour non-Jews who risked their lives to save Jews from the Nazis. He is the brother of artist, Jenö Szervánszky, violinst, Peter Szervánszky and the uncle of Valeria Szervánszky.
Requiem – “Dark Heaven”
Composed in:1963
Musical form:oratorio
Text/libretto:János Pilinszky
Requiem – “Dark Heaven” (1963), an oratorio; text by János Pilinszky (25/11/1921 – 27/05/1981), a Hungarian poet.
J. Pilinszky