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Bela Bartok

  • Date Submitted: 01/28/2010 01:20 AM
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Bela Bartok, One of the best-known Hungarian composers is also one of the most significant musician of the twentieth century. He shared a strong passion   for ethnomusicology, which is the scientific study of music, especially traditional music, as an aspect of culture. Bartok synthesized the Hungarian pattern of music and other folk music that he studied to make his own distinctive style.

Bartok was born on 1881 at Nagyszentmiklos, which became Sinnicolau Mare, Romania. When Bartok’s father died, Paula, Bela’s mother, took their family to Nagyazollos, which later named, Vinogradov, Ukraine.

When Bartok received a smallpox inoculation, it gave him a rash that lasted until he was five years old. Because of this, Bartok spent majority of his childhood in isolation from the other kids. In spare time, he listened to his mother play the piano, which led him to his passion. Soon Bartok begin to show amazing musical ablility then composed dances at age nine.

Bartok studied piano under many teachers. The composer Erno Dohnanyl, who was 4 years older than him, heavily influenced him. When Erno went to Academy of Music in Budapest, Bartok also decided to do so on the year of 1899.

When Bartok graduated, he became a concert pianist. Then in 1907, he turned to a piano instructor at the Budapest Academy. Even though he was not very fond of teaching, he did this for 25 year.

In 1904, before Bartok turned to teaching piano, he met a Hungarian wwoman from Transylvania. She sang many folk music beautifully. This ignited Bartok’s passion for folk music. Two years later, Bartok met Kodaly, who became his best friend. Kodaly also worked with music and helped Bartok to collect recording of Hungarian folk music using an Edison cylinder. But Bartok, who was unlike Kodaly, became interested in folk music of other civilizations. He had a dream of trying to order the scattered folk tunes around the world. This ended his desire for any other kind of...

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