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.

Doráti Antal


Place of Birth
Date of Birth

Conductor Antal Dorati was born in Budapest in 1906. His parents were professional musicians; the father was a violinist in the Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra. At the Ferenc Liszt Academy of Music he was the student of Leo Weiner, Kodály (composition), and Bartók (piano). He also studied philosophy at Vienna University.
When he graduated, he became a rehearsal coach at the Budapest Royal Opera, debuting there as a conductor the same year (1924). In 1928 he became Fritz Busch's assistant at the Dresden Opera, then music director in Münster, Germany (1929-1933). He left Germany for France in 1933 and joined the conducting staff of the Ballets Russes de Monte Carlo, which was the successor to Sergei Diaghilev's famed Russian Ballet company. Touring Europe, Australia, New Zealand, he also made guest conducting appearances with major orchestras. In 1941 he was hired as musical director of the newly-formed American Ballet Theater. Dorati spent four years at the helm of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra (1945-1949), rebuilding it following its complete reorganization. He then led the Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra for more than ten years. He was music director of the BBC Symphony in London (1963-1966), the Stockholm Philharmonic (1966-1970), the National Symphony Orchestra of Washington, D.C. (1970-1977) and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra (1977-1981), and contributed to the elevation of each of them to a great extent. In the meantime, after the 1956 Hungarian revolution, he helped organize the Philharmonia Hungarica from the ranks of Hungarian refugee musicians, making it a highly respected ensemble.

In 1985 he was awarded with Béla Bartók-Ditta Pásztory Prize.

With all these groups he made excellent recordings. He was especially well-known for his Bartók and Kodály recordings, and for his work on other moderns such as Stravinsky, Copland, Messiaen, and Pettersson. One of his greatest legacies was his pioneering series of the complete Haydn symphonies for London (Decca), and his revivals of Haydn operas (Philips). Doráti died in 1988 in Gerzensee, Schwitzerland.