Music Castle in Cserdi

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“Only the truly brave dare to stand up and perform.”

In October the Festival Orchestra took its community concert entitled Music Castle to Cserdi, a mostly Roma-populated village in Baranya county, where a miracle happened. There’s not enough space here to tell you all about it. Instead, please read the on-site reports of, Abcúg or

Here are a few quotes:

“I can only see the back of the boy’s head, but his posture tells me everything: he has decided to be proud. I’m looking at this sweet boy and I’m almost certain that this sentence and the whole afternoon will be memorable, and he’ll probably never forget it.” Source

“There are not only local people here, they came in countless numbers from the nearby villages too. The more the better, this is the most important message here: to be open-minded and receptive, says László Bogdán, who uses the kids’ mobile phones to get acquainted with the current pop culture (“Violetta? Who’s that? Is it a boy or a girl?), then he sits down too and the concert begins. The classical music is not too serious this time, not at all in fact, but this is exactly what makes it easily acceptable. And when the violin is accompanied in harmony with the sound of the many bottle-rattles, then we know for sure: everything is as it should be.” Source

“The climax is obviously the bucket dance. Four percussionists kneel in front of some plastic buckets and start to hammer them in compelling rhythms. The kids get themselves going: almost all of them kneel up and stretch their necks watching the whirling hands of the drummers beating at the same rhythm, they shake their heads to the beat, then mad pushing and pulling starts as drumsticks are distributed, luckily, the orchestra was prepared with enough sticks. This is what stays with the kids the most. “The drummers” – they all said, when I asked them after the show which part of the concert they enjoyed the most. This was despite the joint music playing at the end, where they could finally blow, rattle and pluck Charpentier at full volume, which they did indeed.  The closing applause was long since over, the kids had eaten the stuffed cabbage, László Bogdán had presented the winners of his new scholarship and the musicians were packing their stuff back into the bus when a small group of children started marching home, still blowing their paper trumpets, rattling their bottles, and beating the rhythm with their drumsticks. Source