Savaria Baroque Orchestra was founded by flutist-conductor, Pál Németh. It was created with the aim of rediscovering and presenting 17th and 18th century musical rarities based on documents of and played on instruments of the period through concerts, operas, CDs, radio and TV productions. The string section plays on genuine 18th century instruments while the wind instruments are faithful replicas of originals. Besides the major trends (Italian, French, German and English) of the period the ensemble strives to reintroduce valuable pieces of the Hungarian musical past. The repertoire consists of works of the most diverse musical genres and compositions from solo, chamber, and orchestral works to operas as well as oratorios from the early baroque to classical, from Monteverdi to Mozart. CD recordings include, among others, the works of Boismortier, Galuppi, Albinoni, A. Scarlatti, Vivaldi, M. Haydn, and Charpentier. Savaria Baroque Orchestra has recorded for Hungarian record label Hungaroton, as well as the Hungarian, the Swiss, the French, the Slovak and the Spanish national radios, and the Hungarian National Television. They have performed in concert halls in Austria, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Spain, France, England, Croatia, Romania, and Slovakia.
Savaria Baroque is the permanent orchestra for both Budapest Chamber Opera and Savaria Chamber Opera. Thus it has taken part in several successful performances with them, e.g. the stage adaptations of Monteverdi’s complete works, “Orlando” and “Semele” by Handel; “Il Tigrane” by Vivaldi and the operas of Mozart, Pergolesi, Haydn, and Lully. Their concerts drew great accolade during the Austro-Hungarian Music Festival, the Spring Festival in Budapest, the Opera Festival in Miskolc, and several other baroque festivals (Kassel, Bad Kissingen, Bad Arolsen in Germany; Varasdin, Croatia; Bratislava, Slovakia; Nagyvárad/Oradea, Romania) just to name a few, as well as during the Magyar Magic event series in London and the Versailles Autumn Music Festival.
THE PERMANENT MEMBERS OF THE ORCHESTRA:
Piroska Vitárius – leader;
Ildikó Hadházy, Ildikó Lang, Mariann Kovács, Gergely Balázs – violin;
András Bolyki – viola;
Nora Kállai – cello, viola da gamba;
Dénes Karasszon – cello;
David Hornyák – double bass;
Ágnes Várallyay – harpsichord;
Istvan Győri – lute;
Pál Németh graduated from the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music (Liszt Ferenc Zeneművészeti Főiskola) as a flutist in 1972 and as a conductor in 1975.
As one of the pioneers of the early music scene in Hungary ha has founded several early music ensembles, for example Szombathely Early Music Ensemble (Szombathelyi Régizene Együttes, 1978) , Capella Savaria (1981) , and today Savaria Chamber Opera (1993) , the Central European Baroque Orchestra (Közép-Európai Barokk Zenekar, 1998) and the Savaria Baroque Orchestra (Savaria Barokk Zenekar, 1999), conductor , founder of Le Berger Fortuné, art director of the Central European Early Music Festival (Közép-Európai Régizenei Fesztivál), and permanent conductor of the Mi-To (Milano-Torino) Festival. So far, he has made more than 120 CD and DVD recordings, five of them voted “Record of the Year”. He can boast guest appearances in almost all European countries, as well as North and South America, and Israel.
Mr. Németh’s area of research focuses on Hungarian music history, which does not only include Hungarian music, but a roster of foreign musicians who were active in Hungary, such as Joseph and Michael Haydn, Wenzel Pichl or Karl Ditters von Dittersdorf. He aims to rediscover and reintroduce undeservedly forgotten specialities of the musical literature of the past centuries. His albums and, concerts are a follow up to this research, for example “The birth of Verbunkos”, “The music of the Hungarian Franciscan Order”; “Harmonia Caelestis” by Esterhazy, “Saint Stephen, the First King of Hungary” by Antonio Caldara, and the works of Michael Haydn, Alessandro Scarlatti, and Baldassare Galuppi.
As a conductor he oversees the staging of small cast operas in cooperation with Savaria Chamber Opera, and larger scale productions with Budapest Chamber Opera, for example all the theatrical works by Monteverdi, Handel ‘s “Orlando” and “Semele”, “Il Tigrane” by Vivaldi, “The Magic Flute” and “Mitridate” by Mozart, and Britten’s “Noah”. He is a regular guest to the Baroque Theatre of the Royal Castle in Gödöllő; with his orchestra he has presented several operas such as “The Marriage of Figaro”, “Bastien and Bastienne”, and “Così fan tutte” by Mozart, Rossini’s “Cinderella”, “Il Caffè di Campagna” by Galuppi, Pergolesi’s “The Servant Turned Mistress”, “The Conductor” by Cimarosa, J. Haydn’s “Il Mondo Della Luna”, “The Apothecary”, and “The Songstress”. He is the permanent guest conductor of The Accademia Santo Spirito Torino and Milano – Torino (Mi-To) International Festivals.
In recent years he has made an appearance at the festivals of: Ulm, Donau Fest, Boskovice, Moravia Festival, Bratislava Autumn Festival, Mi-To Festival, Turin, Oradea International Music Festival, Veszprém Fest, Valley of the Arts, Budapest Baroque Festival, Ferencváros Pentecost Festival , the Spring Festivals of Budapest, Eger and, Pécs.
Recent years have seen the release of several books by various publishing houses, all publications complete with a CD attachment (for example, For Wine Drinkers; Healing Saints; Treasures of the Cathedral of Pécs). From 1975 to 2001 Mr. Németh worked as a teacher at the Conservatoire in Szombathely. In 1991 he received the Liszt Award for his artistic work, and in 2001 he was awarded the Hungaroton Award.