Artist database

This is the Artist Database of BMC, which includes information about composers, musicians, orchestras, choirs and groups that are either Hungarian or Hungarian by origin or live in Hungary, as well as information about releases recorded with them.

Prunyi Ilona


Place of Birth
Date of Birth

Ilona Prunyi was born in Debrecen on 1 May 1941. She started playing the piano at the age of 6. She attended the piano major of the Ferenc Liszt Academy of Music between 1958 and 1963, and her teachers were József Gát and András Mihály. She was still a student of the Academy when she participated in the international Liszt-Bartók piano competition in 1961, and was given a certificate of merit.

She obtained her diploma in 1964 and started working at the Academy as a music teacher, where she is now an associate professor. In 1974 she delivered her first concert. Since then, she has been regularly performing, both as a solo player and at orchestra concerts in Budapest and other Hungarian towns.
She has also given concerts in countries of Europe (England, Germany, Austria, France, Czechoslovakia, Romania), as well as in Canada and China. She often appears as a chamber musician, too, and is a frequently employed artist of the Hungarian Television and Radio.

She took part in the piano master courses of Yvonne Lefebure as a fellow artist in Paris several times. HNH International Limited of Hong Kong has commissioned her to give first performances of works of lesser known composers since 1988. She has had 75 albums released throughout the world, most of them on the Marco Polo, Naxos and Hungaroton labels.

She gives several solo performances in Budapest and elsewhere in Hungary every year. Her repertoire is rather broad, besides interpreting pieces from the Classical and Romantic period, she also includes work of French and Russian composers of the early 20th century in her programmes. In recent years she has been giving first performances of contemporary Hungarian composers as well (Emil Petrovics, József Sári, István Láng, Máté Hollós). She has assembled her solo programme of unknown Hungarian compositions introducing pieces of the Liszt era of 19th century Hungarian Romanticism (Ábrányi, Bertha, Beliczay, Mosonyi, Goldmark, Volkmann, Sipos, Gaál, etc.)

Her rendering of the piano concerto by Emil Petrovics, which the composer dedicated to Ilona Prunyi, was a major success, and she regularly performs it at her concerts. She has been named a major figure of the Dohnányi revival unfolding in Hungary for her extensive knowledge of Dohnányi-pieces. (Festival Journal, 2001)

Among her permanent partners are Zoltán Kocsis, Jenő Jandó, László Fassang, Miklós Perényi, Dénes Gulyás, László Polgár, Csaba Onczay, Etelka Csavlek, the Tátrai String Quartet, the New Budapest String Quartet, András Kiss, Eszter Perényi, Anatolij Fokanov, Ingrid Kertesi, László Fenyő and György Liener.

Prizes, acknowledgements:
1985 Certificate of Merit by the Minister of Culture
1992 Award of Excellence of Hungarian Performing Artists
1993 Prize of the Minister of Culture "For Serving Culture"
1993 Artisjus Award
1994 Liszt Award
1997 Artisjus Award
1999 Artisjus Award
2003 "For Ferencváros" Commemorating Medal
2011 Bartók-Pásztory Prize
2015 Merited Aritst

Downloadable press photo (800kb)

Year Title Publisher Code Remark
1988 Bomtempo, João Domingos: Quintet Op. 16; Serenata Portugalsom CD 870006/PS Own
1988 Csajkovszkij, Pjotr Iljics: Évszakok, Op. 37b / Chanson triste
(Tchaikovsky, Pyotr Ilyich: The Seasons / Chanson triste)
Naxos 8.550233 Own
1989 Berwald, Franz: Zongoratriók 1-3.
(Berwald, Franz: Piano trios Nos. 1-3)
Naxos 8.555001 Own
1990 Atterberg, Kurt: Kamarazene I.
(Atterberg, Kurt: Chamber Music I.)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223404
1990 Hollós Máté: Fölfelé hulló levelek éneke Pannon Classic PCL 8006
1990 Korngold, Erich Wolfgang: Zongora szonáták No. 1, 2
(Korngold, Erich Wolfgang: Piano sonatas No. 1, 2)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223384 Own
1st recording
1990 Godowsky, Leopold: Valcermaszkok
(Godowsky, Leopold: Walzermasken)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223312 Own
1st recording
1991 Csajkovszkij zongoradarabok
(Tchaikovsky: Piano Music)
Naxos 8.550504 Own
1991 Berwald, Franz: Piano Trios Nos. 1-3 Naxos 8.223170
1991 Schubert, Franz: Négykezes zongoraművek
(Schubert, Franz: Piano Works for Four Hands, Vol. 1)
Naxos 8.550555 Own
1991 David, Felicien: Zongoratriók
(David, Felicien: Piano trios)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223492 Own
1991 Korngold, Erich Wolfgang: D-dúr Hegedû-zongora szonáta op.6; E-dúr Zongorakvintett op. 15
(Korngold, Erich Wolfgang: Violin - Piano Sonata in D major op.6 / Piano Quintet in E major op. 15)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223385 Own
1st recording
1991 Borogyin: Kamarazene
(Borodin: Chamber Music)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223172 Own
1991 Widor, Charles-Marie: Piano Trio, Op.19 | Piano Quintet, Op.7 Naxos 8.223193 Own
1992 Bennett, William Sterndale: Szextett op. 15; Zongoratrió op. 98
(Bennett, William Sterndale: Sextet op. 15; Piano Trio op. 98)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223304 Own
1992 O, Wunderbare Harmonie Hungaroton HCD/MK 31425
1992 Kuhlau, Friedrich: Zongorakvartettek
(Kuhlau, Friedrich: Piano Quartets)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223482 Own
1992 Bennett, William Sterndale: Piano Works, Vol. 2 Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223526 Own
1st recording
1992 Bennett, William Sterndale: Piano Works, Vol. 1 Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223512 Own
1st recording
1992 Bartók Béla: Dalok
(Bartók, Béla: Songs)
Hungaroton HCD 31535
1993 Boëlmann, Léon: Zongorakvartett, Zongoratrió
(Boëlmann, Léon: Piano Quartet, Piano Trio)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223524 Own
1993 Attenberg, Kurt: Kamarazene II.
(Atterberg, Kurt: Chamber Music II.)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223405
1993 d'Indy, Vincent: Desz-dúr vonósnégyes No. 3 op. 96; G-dúr zongoraötös op. 81; d'Indy, Wilfred: G-dúr zongoratrió op. 15
(d'Indy, Vincent: String Quartet No. 3 in D flat major, Op. 96; Piano Quintet in G minor, Op. 81; d'I)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223691 Own
1993 Bartók Béla: Zongoraátiratok
(Bartók, Béla: Piano Transcriptions)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223663 Own
1st recording
1993 Rahmanyinov, Szergej: Zenekari művek
(Rachmaninov, Sergey: Orchestral works)
Hungaroton HCD 31551 Own
conducted by Howard Williams
1993 Bennett, William Sterndale: Piano Works, Vol. 3 Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223578 Own
1st recording
1994 Piano Music for Students - Associated Board Piano Examination, Grade 8 Marco Polo (Naxos) AB-80803/4 Own
2 CDs
1994 Piano Music for Students - Associated Board Piano Examination, Grades 1-4 Marco Polo (Naxos) AB-80102 Own
1994 Arensky, Anton Stepanovich: Vonósnégyesek No. 1 és 2.; Zongoraötös, Op. 51
(Arensky, Anton Stepanovich: String Quartets Nos. 1 and 2./ Piano Quintet, Op. 51)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223811
1994 Für Elise - Romantic Piano Music Naxos 8.550647
1994 The Maiden's Prayer - Leaves from Grandmother's Piano Album Naxos 8.550646
1994 The Maiden's Prayer and Other Piano Naxos 8.550646DX
1994 Für Elise - Best of Romantic Piano Music Naxos 8.550647DX
1995 Masterpieces of the Romantic Piano Naxos 8.553252
1995 Romance Naxos 8.553216
1995 Fauré, Gabriel: Recquiem Op. 48; Liszt: Via Crucis S. 583 Hungaroton HCD/MK 31424
1995 Fauré, Gabriel: Requiem Op. 48/ Liszt Ferenc: Via Crucis S. 583 Hungaroton HCD 31424
1995 La Valse Hungaroton HCD 31435 Own
1995 Piano Music for Students - Associated Board 1995 Grades 5 - 7 Piano Marco Polo (Naxos) AB-80501 Own
2 CDs
1997 Donizetti & Rossini: Dalok és duettek
(Donizetti & Rossini: Songs & Duets)
Hungaroton HCD 31544
1997 The Best of Tchaikovsky Naxos 8.556652 Own
1997 Láng István: Szonáta hegedűre és zongorára, Szonáta gordonkára és zongorára, Canto per flauto solo etc.
(Láng, István: Sonata for Violin and Piano; Sonata for Cello and Piano; Canto per flauto solo etc.)
Hungaroton HCD 31641
1997 Hungaroton Classic - 1998 Hungaroton HCD 31774 Sampler CD
1998 Kiel, Friedrich: Zongora kvintettek No. 1 és 2
(Kiel, Friedrich: Piano Quintet, Nos. 1, 2)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223171 Own
1998 Sinding: Zongota triók Nos 2;3 Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.223283 Own
1998 Sonata - Classical Favourites for Relaxing and Dreaming Naxos 8.556609
1998 Volkmann, Robert: Zongoramuzsika
(Volkmann, Robert: Piano Music)
Hungaroton HCD 31735 Own
1st recording
1999 My Piano Album Naxos 8.554908DX
2000 Haydn, Joseph: Piano Concertos do-lá stúdio Own
2000 Dohnányi Ernő: Zongoraművek 1.
(Dohnányi, Ernő: Piano Music 1.)
Hungaroton HCD 31910 Own
2000 Szkrjabin, Alexander: III. szimfónia / Le Poeme de l'extase (átiratok)
(Alexander Scriabin: Symphony No. 3 / Le Poeme de l'extase (transcriptions))
Naxos 8.555327 Own
2001 Widor, Charles-Marie: d-moll Zongorakvintett; B-dúr zongoratrió
(Widor, Charles-Marie: Piano Trio, Op. 19 / Piano Quintet, Op. 7)
Marco Polo (Naxos) 8.555416 Own
2001 Gottfried Keller: Der Schmied seines Gluckes Naxos NHB10682
2001 50 éves a Hungaroton - Zongoraművészek (1951-2001)
(Fifty Years of Hungaroton - Pianists)
Hungaroton HCD 32088-90 3 CDs
2001 50 éves a Hungaroton - Énekművészek (1951-2001)
(Fifty Years of Hungaroton - Singers)
Hungaroton HCD 32096-98 3 CDs
2003 Nocturne - Late Night Piano Music Naxos 8.557292
2003 Chill with Tchaikovsky Naxos 8.556785
2004 Klavier Gala Naxos 8.551225-26
2004 Dohnányi Ernő: Zongoraművek 2.
(Dohnányi, Ernő: Piano Music 2.)
Hungaroton HCD 32191 Own
2004 A Musical Journey - St. Petersburg: Palaces of the Tsars Naxos 2.110511
2004 A Musical Journey - Moscow and the Golden Ring Naxos 2.110507 DVD
2004 Kodály Emma: Dalok és Zongoradarabok
(Kodály, Emma: Songs & Piano Pieces)
Hungaroton HCD 32289 Own
First recording
2004 Toner till trost
(Music for Comfort)
Naxos 8.503158
2005 Láng István: Inquieto, Sempre in tensione, Ist es möglich ohne B-A-C-H, VII. Szimfonia
(Láng, István: Inquieto, Sempre in tensione, Ist es möglich ohne B-A-C-H, Symphony No.7)
Hungaroton HCD 32357
2005 The Mystery of Autumn Naxos 8.557791
2005 Night Music, Vol. 9. Naxos 8.556823
2005 The Magic of Spring Naxos 8.557785
2005 Art & Music: Cezanne - Music of His Time Naxos 8.558179
2005 The Very Best of Tchaikovksy Naxos 8.552117-18
2006 Heller, Stephen: Zongoraművek
(Heller, Stephen: Works for Piano)
Hungaroton HCD 32400 Own
First Recording
2006 The Story of British Classical Music Naxos 8.558193-94
2010 A magyar hegedű szelleme
(The Spirit of the Hungarian Violin)
Magánkiadás AVISOCD1001 Not for sale - only for promotion
2010 Easy-Listening Piano Classics: Godowsky Naxos 8.578093-95 3 CDs
2012 My First Tchaikovsky Album Naxos 8.578214