Farkas, Ferenc, prominent Hungarian composer and teacher; b. Nagykanizsa, Dec. 15, 1905. He began to study piano as a child. He took courses with Leo Weiner and Albert Siklos at the Academy of Music in Budapest (1922–27); a state scholarship enabled him to study with Respighi at the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome (1929–31). Returning to Hungary, he was a music teacher at the municipal school in Budapest (1935–41). From 1941 to 1944 he taught at the Cluj Cons., and from 1946 to 1948 he was director of the music school in Szekesfehervar; from 1949 to 1975 he was a prof, of composition at the Academy of Music in Budapest. In 1950 and 1991 he was awarded the Kossuth Prize and in 1960 the Erkel Prize; was made Merited Artist (1965) and Honored Artist (1970) of the Hungarian People’s Republic. He also received the Herder Prize of Hamburg (1979) and was made a Cavaliere deirOrdine della Repubblica Italiana (1985).
DRAMATIC The Magic Cupboard, comic opera (1938–42; Budapest, April 22, 1942; also a separate overture, 1952); The Sly Students, ballet (1949); Csinom PaM, musical play (1950; rev. 1960); Vidroczki, radio ballad (1959; rev. as an opera, 1964); Piroschka, musical comedy (1967); Story of Noszty Junior with Man Toth, musical comedy (1971); Panegyricus, ballet (1972); A Gentleman from Venice, opera (1980). Also incidental music and film scores. ORCH.: Fantasy for Piano and Orch. (1929); Divertimento (1930); Harp Concertino (1937; rev. 1956); Dinner Music for Chamber Orch. (1938); Rhapsodia carpathiana (1940); Marionette’s Dance Suite (1940–1); Musica pentatonica for Strings (1945); Musica dodecatonica, later renamed Prelude and Fugue (1947); Piano Concertino (1947–9); Lavotta, suite (1951); Sym. (1951–52); Scherzo sinfonico (1952); Symphonic Overture (1952); Sketches from the Bukk (1955); Piccola musica di concerto for Strings (1961); Trittico concertato for Cello and Strings (1964); Gydsz es vigasz (Planctus et Consolationes; 1965); Concerto all’Antica for Baryton or Viola da Gamba, and Strings (1965); Serenata concertante for Flute and Strings (1967); Festive Overture (1972); Variazioni classiche (1975–76); Ouverture philharmonique (1977–78); Musica serena for Strings (1982); Musica giocosa, suite (1982); Concertino for Trumpet and Strings (1984). CHAMBER: 3 violin sonatinas (1930,1931,1959); Alia danza ungherese for Cello or Violin and Piano (1934); Scherzino and Intermezzo for Recorder and Piano (1940); Serenade for Wind Quintet (1951); Antiche danze ungheresi for Wind Quintet (1953); Sonata a due for Viola and Cello (1961); Serenade for Flute and 2 Violins (1965); String Quartet (1970–72); Tower Music of Nyirbdtor for 3 Trum-pets, 4 Horns, 3 Trombones, and Tuba (1974); Trio for Violin, Cello, and Piano (1979); 10 Studies for 2 Violins (1982); Trigon for Flute, Bassoon, and Piano (1988). VOCAL: Cantata lirica for Chorus and Orch. (1945); Cantus Pannonicus for Soprano, Chorus, and Orch. (Budapest, April 3, 1959); Flying Flags for Soprano, Baritone, Men’s Chorus, and Orch. (1972–73); Aspirationes principis for Tenor, Baritone, and Orch. (1974–75); Vita poetae for Men’s Trio, Chorus, and Instruments (1976); Ad Musicam for Chorus (1981); songs.
J. Ujfalussy, F. F. (Budapest, 1969).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire