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The Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music in Budapest is the only music academy in the world that was founded by Franz Liszt. The piano virtuoso, composer, conductor, teacher, author and philanthropist established the institution in 1875.
"Génie oblige!" was his credo: the duty of an artist is to use his gifts for the benefit of humanity and to nurture genuine talent. Teaching at the Liszt Academy is rooted in this principle, reflecting the vision of its open and versatile internationally recognised founder, who was years ahead of his time. A straight line can be traced through four generations from Liszt to the Academy's piano professors of today.
It is perhaps not too much of an overstatement to say that no other music school has had such an immense impact on the development of the world's musical scene as the Liszt Academy. Liszt, Hubay, Popper, Dohnányi, Bartók, Weiner, Kodály are among the great professors who figure in the Academy's history. The impressive list of our Honorary Faculty Members bridges genres, continents and ages. Our prestigious alumni were - or still are – beacons in every musical field, whose contributions to the world's cultural heritage are immeasurable.
The Academy has always taken pride in meeting the standards set by its founders and revered professors. This means students encounter a special and demanding Hungarian style of teaching. Education here focuses on understanding the meaning of music and the art of ensemble playing. Those who enter the Liszt Academy know that attendance involves a serious commitment to a perfectionist approach to music. Studying here means hard and disciplined work under the guidance of professors who are renowned artists, visiting professors at other illustrious universities, jury members of international competitions, for whom teaching is a passion. The Liszt Academy is proud to have outstanding, highly experienced, and even young professors.
Teaching is conducted on a one-to-one basis and in small groups and workshops. The Liszt Academy does not strive to train students in large numbers but respects the individual needs of each talented student. All classical instruments, singing/opera, jazz and folk music, orchestral/choral conducting, music pedagogy, composition are offered as majors.
Musical pedagogy tuition is based on the Kodály concept; the Liszt Academy, with its Kodály Institute, is the place where the pedagogical legacy of Kodály is most authentically maintained.
Student who study chamber music, a tradition of unique richness maintained by the Academy, will be given lots of performance opportunities. The Academy's choir and symphony orchestra maintain rigorous standards, and are conducted by widely renowned guest conductors such as Zoltán Kocsis, Helmut Rilling, Peter Schreier.
Lessons in the main instrumental/singing subjects are available in English and/or German, based upon prior agreement with the teacher. Group lessons are held in English. Full-time tuition in non-instrumental majors is offered in English, provided there are a minimum of five international students admitted to a given major in a year.
Full-time tuition is provided for BA (6 semesters) and MA (4 semesters) degrees. For international students, musical teacher trainees and choral conductors, the Kodály Institute of the Liszt Academy in Kecskemét offers comprehensive non-degree, BA and MA degree courses in Kodály Music Pedagogy along with the biennial summer seminars.
The Special School for Exceptional Young Talents is open to especially gifted students of piano, violin and cello aged from 8 to 18 (age limit at the time of application: 13). Those who wish to proceed with their training after graduation may apply to the Academy's DLA, PhD programmes.
Non-degree tuition is also available, covering 1 or 2 lessons in the instrumental majors plus 1 optional chamber music lesson per week. Although this course does not lead to a diploma, the student is granted a certificate. Preparation courses are also available, targeted for would-be full-time students to provide potential applicants with the necessary instrumental and theoretical background prior to the highly demanding entrance exam.