Georges (György) Cziffra
Budapest, 5 November 1921 –
Longpont-sur-Orge, 15 January 1994
World-renowned Hungarian-born pianist and piano virtuoso, Georges (György) Cziffra was born to a Gypsy musician family. His father, György Cziffra was a cimbalom player. Georges was admitted to Franz Liszt Academy of Music of Budapest at the age of 8, where his teachers were Ernő Dohnányi, Leó Weiner, György Ferenczy and Imre Keéri-Szántó. The young pianist scored success after success.
In 1943 he served on the front in the army. His attempt to escape from Hungary landed him in prison in 1950. After the 1956 uprising he settled in Paris. He became the acclaimed master pianist of the Romantic composers (Schubert, Chopin, Liszt, Brahms, Rachmaninov). His technique and skill as an improviser placed him among the greatest pianists. His brilliant and unique career, skills, knowledge and personality as well as his work to help young musicians are exemplary.
- 1956 Franz Liszt Award
- 1986 Honorary citizen of Kőszeg
- 1993 Officer of the Legion of Honour of France
- 1993 Order of Merit of the Republic of Hungary, Commander Cross