Mysterious Encounters with the most Prominent Figures of Music History: Interview with Gergely Rákász

Gergely Rákász is a truly outstanding figure of the contemporary Hungarian music scene. The organist invites us to embark on a journey into the world of classical music in a special way: during his shows, he narrates the pieces himself that are accompanied by fine arts, dance and theatrical elements making it an even more extraordinary experience to the audience.

Earlier you said that your scenery concerts weren’t exactly welcomed by some people in your profession. Are there still critical voices with regards to the genre you created?

First off, my concerts are not about some empty hype that suppresses the music. The genre was born to combine several fields of art to bring people closer to classical music and the composers who dreamt these wonderful pieces. So, no, there is no more pouting. Things settled down: everyone does what they need to do from their end. The academic sphere is absolutely needed, just like my interpretation. The pieces I perform came to life for a reason. On one hand, they came from that deep struggle of wanting to create, but these immensely talented composers were human beings, too, desiring recognition. And what could be a bigger gift to Mozart or Gershwin than the fact that people enjoy their company – literally, I mean – even after hundreds of years have passed. I think it’s a bit like emailing: you don’t have to fly to the other end of the world to share your thoughts with someone. You can send a piece of your mind in one single message. That’s what happens with music, not only through time, but through space as well. During my special concerts, the audience has a chance to feel like they were really in the company of these magnificent composers. They can see the essence of their soul. If you think about it, it’s quite a mysterious thing after all – that is what drives me and that is exactly why I don’t care much about reviews.

Have you ever thought about composing, so that you can have a similar legacy, a piece of your soul left for the forthcoming generations?

I have thought of it, but only for a moment or two. That is a very different toolbar. I’m good at interpreting things, at addressing the audience from the stage. Schubert for example could have never done that, unlike Liszt, who wasn’t only a terrific composer but an incredible performer, too. It numbs me to my core to think about what Bach or Schubert created, and how little I know compared to them. That’s why I don’t feel the will to create.