Pianist Márta Kurtág was born in 1927 in Esztergom, Hungary. She started to learn the piano when she was around 5 from the best local piano teacher in Esztergom called Júlia Brenner. She proved to be highly talented and she was sent away to Debrecen, Hungary to continue her piano studies at the age of 11. Later she studied in Budapest at the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music with István Antal, Pál Kadosa, Lajos Hernádi, Leó Weiner, and András Mihály.
From 1953 to 1963 she was a piano teacher at the Béla Bartók College of Music, and from 1972 at the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music.
For more than seven decades she has been the wife of György Kurtág as well as the authoritative performer of his compositions. They have regularly performed together, playing Kurtág’s pieces and the four-hand piano transcriptions of Bach’s chorals. They have performed at festivals and venues like the Palais Garnier (Festival d’Automne à Paris), Piano aux Jacobins (Paris), Théàtre du Jeu de Paume (Aix-en-Provence), Jerusalem Music Center, Aldeburgh Festival, the Library of Congress (Washington), the Carnegie Hall (New York), Tonhalle (Zürich), Mozart Week (Salzburg) and the Wiener Festwochen.
As a soloist, accompanist and chamber musician Márta Kurtág has performed and recorded extensively. Her piano performances have been released by ECM, Col Legno, and BMC Records. In 2009, she has recorded Beethoven’s Diabelli Variations for BMC Records.
In 2017, Márta Kurtág and György Kurtág have been presented with a Borletti-Buitoni Trust award in recognition of their distinguished contribution to the world of music, as well as their long and devoted musical partnership.