Erkel, Ferenc (b Gyula, 1810; d Budapest, 1893). Hung. composer. Cond. Budapest Nat. Th. 1838–74. Founder and cond. Budapest Phil. 1853–71. Prof. of pf., Hung. Nat. Acad. of Mus., dir. 1875–88. One of first Hung. ‘nationalists’, striving to est. nat. opera. His first opera, Bátori Mária (1840), was followed by Hunyádi László (1844, rev. 1885) and by Bánk Bán (1844–52, prod. 1861) which is traditionally perf. on nat. holiday. Other operas are Dózsa György (1866), Brankovics György (1874), and King István (1874–84).
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