The “Budapest Gypsy Symphony Orchestra”, is the World’s largest gypsy symphony Orchestra. It has been founded in 1985, when Sándor Járóka, at the time Hungary’s most famous “primas” (gypsy soloist) died. All Hungarian gypsy musicians after the funeral ceremony began to play.
“I have two golden bands on my forehead, one is my Hungarian and the other is my Gypsy identity. I don’t want to give up any of them, since both are mine.” Péli Tamás
The words by Tamás Péli the world renowned Hungarian painter artist of Gypsy origin fit perfectly the Budapest Gypsy Symphony Orchestra and Hundred Gypsy Violins! The Golden Book and the Invisible Museum of Hungarian Spirit deservedly preserve the name and performance so far of the Budapest Gypsy Symphony Orchestra and Hundred Gypsy Violins, holder of the Hungarian Heritage prize and Hungaricum prize.
The world famous company was born 30 years age and is a band operating in the form of a classical symphonic orchestra, a unique musical formation worldwide. The activity of the Budapest Gypsy Symphony Orchestra and Hundred Gypsy Violins by which they preserve the traditions is a priceless value without a peer globally. Beside classical pieces of arts – including those of Liszt, Bartók, Kodály, Hubay, Erkel, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Sarasate, Strauss – they also play traditional Hungarian Gypsy music, Hungarian melodies and folk songs alike.
Since its formation the orchestra performed more than a thousand concerts ranging from the culture house in the tiniest community in the country up to a number of large and famous concert halls around the world. It has become an absolutely positive emblematic institution holding its own image which conveys values at their concerts, thus bridging the different social strata.
Beside conserving and caring for the traditional sound presented by special and unique arrangements you can also find the musical experimentation of the modern world in their performances.
According to the critics “there is something enchanting” when “the world most famous and largest Gypsy orchestra” appears on stage.
The reason behind this is that the very same enthusiasm takes them over on each show. Success is a message for them, giving ever more inspiration to all musicians.
The main attraction at the opening ceremony of the Lisbon World Exhibition was the concert given by the Budapest Gypsy Symphony Orchestra and Hundred Gypsy Violins to twenty thousand people.
In Cartago they won the “Festival Award” on the 45th International Music Festival. An audience of fifteen thousand celebrated the bursting success.
In Paris at the Theatre des Champs Elysées they played on 55 shows between 2002 and 2014 with great success.
They participate on concert tours in France and Monaco each year in a row from 1994 on, performing on stage in nearly all large and small cities.
They played in cities in Africa, The Americas, Asia, Australia, and a number of European cities.
They won the Hungarian Heritage Prize in 2000, the same year they were also included in the Guinness Book of Records.
Throughout its existence the Budapest Gypsy Symphony Orchestra and Hundred Gypsy Violins published 21 CDs, 5 DVDs, of which 8 and 14 have become platinum and golden discs, respectively.
A number of radio and television recordings were made about them, they won the Standard Prize of the Hungarian Radio and a number of professional recognitions on several domestic and international festivals.
The 25 member Junior Section was formed with the objective that over time the now young talents could form the future generation and the backbone of the orchestra.
They acquire the tricks of the trade from the Budapest Gypsy Symphony Orchestra and Hundred Gypsy Violins soloists on special rehearsal sessions.
Beside they also work as an independent band and had several successful concert on their own with the first CD published.
The Budapest Gypsy Symphony Orchestra and Hundred Gypsy Violins fits organically into the Hungarian system of cultural institutions.
Its main goal is to maintain this exceptional musical value. Preserving the centuries long tradition passed down by Gypsies from generation to generation as a family heritage.
With its art and music, this orchestra will find the way to the heart of the audience anywhere and any time, thus enriching the colourful portfolio of European culture.
The Budapest Gypsy Symphony Orchestra and Hundred Gypsy Violins celebrated their 30th anniversary at the great hall of the Liszt Ferenc Music Academy on 6 June 2015 befittingly.
For a joint jamming session, the Cigánski Diabli Orchestra from Slovakia, Ernő Kállai Junior Prima Prize winner violinist and their perpetual lead vocalist, the Kossuth prize winner Margit Bangó melody singer were all invited as guest performers.
From 18 March on the Budapest Gypsy Symphony Orchestra and Hundred Gypsy Violins is entitled to use the distinguished title of HUNGARICUM.
Hungaricum: a collective term indicating such a value worth the distinction and excellence in a uniform classification, categorisation and registration system which can be regarded as a top achievement of the Hungarians through its characteristic features typical for the Hungarians, through its uniqueness, specialty and high quality;