The Transparent Sound New Music Festival (meaning also ‘see-through note’) was founded by two composers, Balázs Horváth and Samu Gryllus, in 2014 in cooperation with several renowned concert halls and organisations in Budapest: the Franz Liszt Music Academy, Trafo House of Contemporary Arts, Budapest Music Center, Müpa Budapest and FUGA Budapest Center of Architecture, among others.
The name of the festival refers to its aims. Transparency in new music means that the audience is involved in interactive workshops and lectures before or during the events, to better understand the new compositional ideas. Meanwhile ‘see-through’ in music refers to compositions with both audible and visual layers – in the form of new-music theatre or new media –, as they are a special focus of this festival.
It is very important to the curators to introduce – besides the newest works – referential and highly influential pieces of new music history, since they were not well-presented in Hungary during its isolation behind the Iron Curtain. These works can help bring the highly receptive, inquisitive audience in Budapest closer to the innovative and versatile world of today´s new music. The festival’s work is strongly supported by the cooperating partners, the venues themselves, as well as many national and international Budapest-based cultural institutes. In 2020, an advisory board of twelve experts from artistic and organisational fields was founded. In 2020, Marcell Dargay joined the board as a third artistic director.
In 2021, due to the general lockdowns, the festival consisted of the usual variety of online events which made the programmes accessible to a significant new audience worldwide and reached audience app 15000. These were complemented by a series of live events in the autumn and winter of 2021/22 in Budapest. From this on, the festival’s organisers work with the help of an advisory board of twelve artists, curators and music educators. The Festival’s 10th anniversary was celebrated in early 2023, and in 2024, the festival will continue under the title Knots with a wider and colourful program than ever before, for a whole month, with the participation of prestigious Hungarian and international performers/composers.
Advisory board: János Bali, András Csonka, Ádám Darázs, Marcell Dargay, Gergely Fazekas, Judit Gaál, Samu Gryllus, Katalin György-Dóczy, Balázs Horváth, Márton Illés, Orsolya Kaincz, András Kégl, Ernő Rubik, György Szabó, Judit Varga, István Varga
Founders of the festival: Samu Gryllus, Balázs Horváth, Zsuzsanna Szálka