Kamara.hu has a long past behind it. Having been playing at various music festival of the world for quite some years, more than 10 years ago, we came up with the idea to launch a festival in Budapest that focussed entirely on chamber music. The kind of musical attitude that is the absolute reference point for us in our music making endeavours was bequeathed on us by such musical giants as György Kurtág, Ferenc Rados, András Schiff and Sándor Végh. The joint musical discoveries we had the good fortune to experience with these geniuses made us aware of the immense significance of chamber music and its vast impact both on individuals and on the community.

Izabella Simon & Dénes Várjon
(photo: Andrea Felvégi)

Our first chamber music festival came about with the assistance of the legendary concert organiser, Kálmán Strém. We had felt right at the beginning of our career how crucial it was for us to convey a message to our audience. In order to make it happen, we turned to literature, and with the help of an important literary piece, we managed to create an even more complete picture. This is the explanation why our first chamber music festival was titled after Stefan Zweig’s memoires „The World of Yesterday”. This was followed by new themes each year. 2015, though, represented a turning point for us, as after the various venues, the Liszt Academy kindly offered to host the event. With this move, we could say, we came home, as it was this very building where our music careers took off, when we were just children. Now, having returned to our alma mater – in the company of many a globally celebrated artist -, we can create an island that reflects our creed in the best possible way. Our concert series then received a name and was granted a permanent spot in the third week of November. We benefited from the experiences accumulated in the preceding years, thus Kamara.hu is organised in a much concentrated form. So as to convey an even more complete message of the given theme, in addition to the five concerts, we have enriched the series with a children’s concert and a literary discussion.

The arrangement of a thematic chamber music festival always means a special challenge to the participating artists. Approaching a certain topic from every angle as well as its inexhaustible pool of associations, finding the cornerstones within music with the help of other art forms that inspire us to think with one another and come to further conclusions, keep opening up the gates of a magic world before us all.

Thanks to our numerous performances both in Hungary and abroad, we can count ourselves very lucky: we can invite our friends, the leading musicians of the world, singularly excellent masters of their instruments, performers of the most prestigious concert venues to our festival.  In spite of this, the stress of our chamber music festival is not on the performers themselves, the list of celebrities, but on the central message of the theme and that we manage to convey this message in the most complex way possible to ourselves and our audience with the power of a shared ideology and unanimity.