Peace Palace Peace and Justice

Lecture: ‘The Kodály concept as a UNESCO intangible heritage’

Lecture: ‘The Kodály concept as a UNESCO intangible heritage’

Zoltán Kodály is a Hungarian composer, ethnomusicologist, music educator and linguist. He is the founder of the Kodály Concept of Music Education. The unique lecture, given by the director of the Liszt Academy of the Kodály Institue and László Norbert Nemes will explain the importance of Kodály’s legacy. . The Peace Palace is connected to the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music in Budapest through the European Heritage Label. Both institutions are recognised for the role they have played in European history and their activities, which bring the EU and its citizens closer together. The lecture that is held in the Peace Palace will include different musical pieces, performed by violist Joseph and cellist Sietse-Jan Weijenberg. The introduction will be provided by UNESCO and Jeroen Vervliet, director of the Peace Palace library. UNESCO has appointed 2017 as a special Zoltán Kodály anniversary year.

Zoltán Kodály’s concept to safeguard the Hungarian folk heritage music of Hungary was selected by UNESCO on the Register of Good Safeguarding Practices. The Hungarian adaptation of the Kodály concept is considered a worthwhile education model that contributes to the development of musical skills of children at a very young age and can also be implemented in other countries around the world. The Kodály Concept is applied all over the world, including in major institutions in the Netherlands, such as the Nationale Koren and the Royal Conservatoire. His concept of music education is based on the musical and cultural traditions of that of Hungary and Europe. Two of the country’s most eminent composers, Zoltán Kodály and Béla Bartók managed to recapture the most ancient layers of Hungarian folk music during the first decades of the twentieth century when the peasantry, that was in the possession of this unique musical repertory, as class gradually started to disappear.

In the words of Zoltán Kodály: “Teach music and singing at school in such a way that it is not a torture but a joy for the pupil; instill a thirst for finer music in him, a thirst which will last for a lifetime”