Joint concert - Széchenyi István University builds a bridge between Győr and Iowa

The Wind Ensemble of the Northern Iowa State University gave a joint concert with the Győr Symphonic Band, the wind ensemble of Széchenyi István University, in the University’s Concert Hall. In her opening speech, Dr Eszter Lukács, Vice-Rector for International Affairs at Széchenyi University, emphasised that, like a strong-winged bird, education in the Arts at SZE, a leading university in the field of engineering, creates balance.

Széchenyi István University opens its doors wide to international students and lecturers, and is also dynamically strengthening its international partnerships. In doing so, it provides a truly international environment for students. This is one of the reasons why the global student community has grown steadily in recent years. Some 800 foreign students from 65 countries now attend Széchenyi University.

On Monday, in the University Concert Hall, as guests of the institution, the University of Northern Iowa’s Wind Ensemble came to Győr to perform with the Győr Symphonic Band which is celebrating its 25th anniversary.

"We believe music is a bridge between cultures, and that is what we are building tonight," said Dr Csaba Hontvári, Dean of the Faculty of Music and Design at Széchenyi István University.


The joint concert provided the audience with a unique experience. The Győr Symphonic Band was conducted by Ferenc Szabó. (Photo: Csaba József Májer)

The dean said that the American ensemble had already noticed the high quality of the Győr musicians' performance, and that is why they took the initiative to perform a joint concert on their European tour with the Győr ensemble.

For Széchenyi István University, it is extremely important to convey global values in the field of culture to its students, in addition to its internationally high-quality programmes, also available in English, and to enrich the lives of its students with unique experiences, such as this concert, bringing colour to the evenings in Győr.

"For our University, which is at the forefront of engineering, the success of our Arts education is vital to create the necessary balance, so these two pillars can be compared to a strong-winged bird."

- said Dr Eszter Lukács, Vice-Rector for International Affairs, in her opening speech, giving the audience an introduction to Széchenyi István University in both English and Hungarian.

During the intimate evening, both orchestras performed pieces related to their national cultures, bringing their values closer together.

As a symbol of their cooperation, the leaders of the two bands presented each other with gifts before the evening's closing ceremony. Meanwhile, Dr Danny Galyen, conductor of the American ensemble, commented to huge applause, "Thank you very much for your contribution, you play beautifully."

In March, the Iowa conductor had the opportunity to get to know the orchestra and the University up close, as he was a guest of the eighth International Hidas Frigyes Wind Orchestra Conducting Course in Győr. The American-Hungarian cooperation is therefore expected to continue.


Dr Danny Galyen was the principal conductor and Dr Justin Mertz was guest conductor of the Iowa orchestra. Dr Anthony Williams (centre) dazzled the audience with his uniquely sensitive trombone playing. (Photo: Csaba József Májer)

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