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Zoltán Kodály Letter to George Barány (MS 209), November 1953

University of Colorado at Boulder Libraries. Special Collections Dept.


© 2009

University of Colorado

Collection Summary

Title Zoltán Kodály Letter to George Barány (MS 209)
Dates (Inclusive) November 1953
Creator Zoltán Kodály
Abstract One handwritten letter by Zoltán Kodály to George Barány.
Collection Number MS 209
Size 1 folder
Repository University of Colorado at Boulder Libraries. Special Collections Dept.


Zoltán Kodály (1882-1967) was a Hungarian composer, ethnomusicologist of Hungarian folk music, educationalist, and critic. He taught theory and composition at the Liszt Academy of music beginning in 1907 and, upon his retirement, served as Director of the Academy in 1945. His compositions include Psalmus Hungaricus, the operas Háry János (1926), and Spinning Room (1932), as well as the orchestral Dances of Marosszék (1930) and Dances of Galánta (1933), all reflecting influences from the Hungarian tradition. Other orchestral works include: Concerto for Orchestra (1939–40), Symphony (1957–61) and, one of his best-known scores, Variations on a Hungarian Folk Song (1938–39). He became president of the Hungarian Arts Council in 1945 and, in 1962, received the Order of the Hungarian People's Republic. (Biographical information drawn from the International Kodaly Society at

George Barány (1922-2001) was a Hungarian refugee who studied History at the University of Colorado at Boulder, receiving his M.A. in 1958 and his Ph.D. in 1960. Having taught History at the University of Denver between 1960 and 1992, he retired as professor emeritus. Barány served as president of the Conference on Central and East European History of the American Historical Association and the American Association for the Study of Hungarian History. His honors include two Fulbright awards for Hungary, fellowships of the American Council of Learned Societies, the American Philosophical Society and IREX. Barány's works include: Stephen Széchenyi and the Awakening of Hungarian Nationalism, 1791-1841 (1968) and The Anglo-Russian Entente Cordiale of 1697-1698: Peter I and William III at Utrecht (1986).

Scope and Content

MS 209 includes one handwritten, signed letter from Zoltán Kodály to George Barány. The letter is written in Hungarian. It includes a hand addressed envelope from Budapest, November 1953, with a hand drawn diagram, labeled in Hungarian. A transcription of the letter accompanies the letter and reads as follows:

This year, too, my main endeavor has been the editing of the Collection of Hungarian Folk Songs. The second volume has gone to the printers, the fourth is in preparation; the third will be published during the coming year.

My other endeavor had to do with improvements in the profession of teaching music. To this end I wrote several volumes of a singing course for two and three voices. Their publication is imminent [sic].

I have had very little time for my own musical compositions that I had started earlier, and that I had planned to do. I hope that during the coming year I shall manage to finish both orchestral and chamber compositions of mine.

Zoltán Kodály


Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Copy Restrictions

Limited duplication of materials allowed for research purposes. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Preferred Citation

Zoltán Kodály Letter to George Barány (MS 209), University of Colorado at Boulder Libraries. Special Collections Dept.

Processing Information

Machine-readable finding aid prepared by Susan Guinn-Chipman, September 2009.

Acquisition Information

MS 209 was donated by George Barány.

Access Terms

Barany, George, 1922-2001

Kodály, Zoltán, 1882-1967

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