Front of the Liszt Academy's concert centre
Photo: Remy Franck

There is trouble in Budapest over the rector’s tender for the Liszt Academy of Music. Protests by artists, teachers and academics, who fought for the autonomy of the academy, have led to the withdrawal of the tender by the responsible Minister János Csák. The Ministry had planned to fill the position with the conductor András Keller, but because the entire profession resisted the Ministry’s attempt to impose the will of the government on the university, this has now failed for the time being.

According to press reports, there had not been a single artistic and professional group in the Hungarian music scene in the last two weeks that had not protested against the highly discriminatory nature of the application for the post of rector. Since the announcement on July 3 of the application to succeed Andrea Vigh, who will step down as rector on Oct. 31, 2023, the number of protesters has been growing practically constantly because the ministry wanted to significantly limit the pool of candidates for the rector’s post.

There is no new call for candidates yet. It is still uncertain whether other candidates, such as composers, will be able to apply for the post of rector of the Liszt Academy in a new attempt. In the first call for applications, three teaching and research areas of the Liszt Academy – composition, musicology and music education – were excluded. Only performing artists were eligible to apply.

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