Miklós Szabó

November 27, 1909 Székesfehárvár- May 22, 1999 Budapest

Picture of Miklós Szabó

Picture of Miklós Szabó
Miklós Szabó, as a Cistercian high school student, already sang regularly. He studied at the philological faculty of the Pázmány Péter University Hungarian, Latin, German and Italian languages. Owing to his beautiful voice, Szabó received a recommendation for the famous voice teacher living in Budapest Max Herzberg, who was so impressed by the talent of the young man that he accepted him as a private student without fee.

Szabó studied with him from 1927 to 1930. During 1937-38, Szabó sang at the Városi Színház. During the Jewish persecution from 1939 to 1941, he worked at the Hungarian radio, then from 1941 to 1945 at the Budapest opera house taking over the roles of Pál Fekete, as a result Mihály Székely did not even want to greet him.

In 1945, Szabó was not allowed to appear on stage, and had to do casual labors to survive. From 1946 to 1948, Szabó became a member of the Vígopera and later, until 1957, was a soloist with the Philharmonic orchestras.

In 1957, Viktor Vaszy hired Szabó in Szeged, where he remained until his retirement, however without interrupting his connection to the radio. There, he recorded several operas (approximately 38 hours worth of material), for example a complete Lucia di Lammermoor and Hunyadi László (with Mária Gyurkovics and Sándor Svéd). He also recorded many Operettas and even so-called Hungarian songs that, thanks to him, became popular in broad circles of the society.

Szabó was very also successful as a translator. In the time, he lived in Szeged, he translated 28 opera librettos and Oratorios from Italian and German to Hungarian. He translated as well songs in French, Russian, Finnish, Slovak, Swedish and Spanish languages. Szabó convinced also the Italian conductor Aldo Ceccato that one can interpret Italian opera also in Hungarian.

Szabó was multi-talented: He wrote Lieder texts, a historical novel for the youth, and set music to several Hungarian poems. Despite his advanced age, Szabó sung some smaller roles, so when he was already eighty, he sang Altoum at the Szeged festival. Szabó played the old emperor so convincingly that the Brazilian tenor Muñoz (Calaf) was concerned during the evening that the old master could collapse at every moment.

During his Szseged time, Szabó received the Liszt Ferenc Price. Two films were made about him for Television. Szabó received also for his life's work the officer cross. He died in Budapest. At the cemetery, the farewell speech was spoken by János Sebestyén

Miklós Szabó singsTosca: E lucevan le stelle, in Hungarian
on May 23, 1989 in Szeged with a short interview
In RA Format

Miklós Szabó singsL'elisir d'amore: Una furtiva lagrima, in Hungarian
In RA Format

Miklós Szabó singsManon Lescaut: Donna non vidi mai, in Hungarian
In RA Format
I wish to thank Ildikó Vegh for the recordings and biographical notes.

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