Masters from the Past

The "Final Hour" programme

Péter Árendás, by Bege Nóra
  • event type:WOMEX 15 Conference
  • date:23 Oct 2015
  • time:16:15 - 17:00
  • city/area:Budapest
  • venue:Conference Room 2, Bálna
  • country:Hungary
  • event submitted by:Piranha Arts

Chaired by:

Péter Árendás (Hungary)
Hagyományok Háza/Hungarian Heritage House

After the collapse of Eastern Bloc communism in 1990, folk culture in the region experienced a rapid transition. Thus in the mid-1990s, believing that they were in the 'final hour', Hungary wanted to take the last chance to document the traditional music still remaining in the Hungarian language region.

Between 1997 and 2001, over a four-year period, 112 traditional bands participated in the 'final hour' project. 1250 hours of material were documented: roughly 23,000 melodies. The aim was to record music well-known to the performers, whichever ethnic group they belonged to.

The resulting collection includes Hungarian, Romanian, Gypsy, Saxon, Jewish, Slovakian, Gorol, Rusyn, Serbian and Croatian melodies, giving a comprehensive picture of folk music in the entire Carpathian Basin.

Photo credit: Péter Árendás, by Bege Nóra.