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.

Selmeczi György

piano, conductor

Place of Birth
Kolozsvár [Cluj Napoca, Romania]
Date of Birth

8 March 1952 Kolozsvár [Cluj, Romania]

Composer, conductor, pianist, opera director, an exceptionally diverse personality being familiar with almost every genres of music.

György Selmeczi started his music studies in his hometown at the age of five under the guidance of Sarolta Tulogdy, Mihály Guttmann, Miklós Szalay and Péter Vermesy. From 1971 to 1975 he was pupil of György Halmos and Tibor Oláh at the Music Academy of Bukarest, while between 1975 and 1976 he studied at the Ferenc Liszt Academy of Music Budapest as pupil of Pál Kadosa. From 1976 to 1977 he was scholarship-holder of the IRCAM (Paris) as student of Pierre Boulez.

In 1979 he worked under the guidance of Daniel Charles in the CERIS (Paris). His career launched at the Hungarian Theatre of Kolozsvár, where he was composer and conductor between 1974 and 1975, making several radio- and television recordings throughout Romania. In 1976 he founded the New Music Workshop in Miskolc. From 1976 to 1977 he taught chamber music in the Teacher Training Institute of the Ferenc Liszt Music Academy’s department in Miskolc.

Later he became music director at the 25th Theatre in Budapest and at the National Theatre of Miskolc. In the ’80s he was music director of the Budapest Castle Theatre and the Attila József Theatre. From 1987 he was chairman of the Mérték Association, as well as founder of the Contemporary Opera Forum (Vetületek). In 1989 he re-founded the chamber orchestra Camerata Transsylvanica and at the same time he founded and directed the Budapest Chamber Opera.

From 1991 to 1999 he was constant guest conductor of the Hungarian Opera of Kolozsvár. Between 1996 and 2000 he worked as music director of the Szigligeti Theatre in Szolnok, while from 2000 to 2002 he was art director of the Millenáris Park and Cultural Program Office. Between 2002 and 2008 he was music director of the National Theatre. Since 2002 he’s been head of music department at the University of Theatre and Film and since 2004 he’s been art director of the Hungarian Opera of Kolozsvár. In 1995 he founded the Auris Company where he is art director up to now.

His activity as composer varies from vocal-symphonic works to chamber-, choral- and stage works. Major works of György Selmeczi are: Siren (opera), Love and mercy (oratorio based on Shakespeare’s texts), Hymns (cantata cycle), six masses, four string quartets, sacred works, two concertos, etc. Besides, he is composer of a number of theatre pieces and about fifty Hungarian movies. As conductor and pianist he gives concerts all over Europe. He made numerous radio-, television- and CD-recordings as well as opera films. He has presented many hundreds of contemporary works.

Throughout his career, György Selmeczi was awarded many times. He received the Best Soundtrack Award of the Budapest Film Week (1983, 1986), the Artisjus Prize for the Best Contemporary Music Performance (1987, 1990), the Composer Award of the Animation Film Week in Kecskemét (1995) and the Erkel Prize (1999). In 2002 he won the Ferenc Liszt Album Grand Prize with his album titled Liszt: Late works. In 2008 he was awarded with the Duna Prize and with the Knight’s Cross of Merit of Order of the Hungarian Republic (2010). In 2023 he was awarded with the Artist of the Nation Prize.

see also: Selmeczi György - composer