András Kórodi


Born: May 24, 1922 Died: September 17, 1986
Andras Korodi was among the more important Hungarian conductors of his generation. While he often conducted the works of Bartók and Kodály, he generally favored twentieth century repertory, as well as the works of Wagner.

Korodi was born in Budapest on May 24, 1922. He showed musical talent as a child; his first serious study came at the Franz Liszt Academy in Budapest, where he studied with iconic Hungarian conductor János Ferencsik. He also took lessons in composition there with composer László Lajtha. Korodi's sympathies were with opera as much as with orchestral music. It is thus no surprise that his first official post was at the Budapest Opera, in 1946, working with the company's singers as their répétiteur. But he also began conducting there at the same time; his debut effort was Kodály's Háry János.

Gradually he built his career, generally balancing opera with symphonic performances. In 1957 he achieved what no previous Hungarian conductor had -- at the invitation of the Bolshoi, he led performances of Bizet's Carmen at the historic Russian opera house. He was appointed principal conductor at the Budapest Opera in 1963, and thereafter distinguished himself with many acclaimed productions, often of new works, like Sándor Szokolay's Blood Wedding, in 1964. He later recorded that opera for Hungaroton Records.

In 1967 he was appointed president/conductor of the Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra, an ensemble that draws some of its membership from the Budapest Opera Orchestra and performs many of its concerts at the opera house. Korodi remained active for most of the rest of his career, making numerous recordings.

As a teacher at the Budapest Academy beginning in 1957, Korodi had many distinguished students, including conductors Andras Ligeti and Adam Medveczky. Korodi's name is often found today in recordings on budget labels, featuring theme- or mood-titled recordings (Romantic Music for so-and so; Dreamy Music for..., etc.), he also recorded a wide range of solid repertory from Wagner and Liszt to Prokofiev and the Hungarian moderns. Korodi died in Venice, Italy, on September 17, 1986.