Photo: Sake Elzinga
Lajos Sárközi Jr. and his band
Lajos Sárközi Jr. was born as a descendant of a family of seven generations of musicians.. He started playing the violin when he was only five years old. His first teacher was his father, who is also a violinist. Later he went to the music school of Józsefváros (Budapest), where his teacher was Judit Szászné Réger. At the age of thirteen he continued his studies in the Class of Special Talents at the Franz Liszt Academy of Music in Budapest, where his teacher was Eszter Perényi. He has been honoured with several first prizes at competitions. In 2003 and in 2008 he won the featured first prize of the Ede Zathureczky Hungarian Violin Competition.
In 2009, he had two solo concerts with the California-based Silicon Grace Walley Symphony Orchestra. As solo violinst or even as a member of wellknown bands, he has traveled to many parts of the world with others as one of the „Session” musician.
After being a student, he became an auxiliary primate on his father’s side in the famous Kárpátia Restaurant. He learnt the Hungarian gypsy music in his father’s ensemble, and later he founded his own band, called Lajos Sárközi Jr. and his Band. The members are Lajos Sárközi Jr. (first violin), Lajos Sárközi Sr. (second violin), Gyula Bóni (viola), Rudolf Sárközi (double bass) and Gyula Csík (“cimbalom”).
At the age of 17, he was also invited to head the National Philharmonic Orchestra, where he could play with Hungary’s most popular pianist and conductor, Zoltán Kocsis. He is a permanent participant in the life of the prestigious festival in Hungary together with his band (Kapos Festival, Cziffra Festival, and Festival Academy). In 2015, the music society elected him head of the Gipsy Philharmonic Orchestra, artistic director, and chief primate. In 2013, he was the music producer of Nóta tv until the channel’s existence.
He toured the United States with the deservedly famous saxophonist of the jazz/pop profession, Tim Ries (Rolling Stones).
In the evenings, since 2011, he has been playing in the oldest restaurant in Budapest, called Százéves Étterem (Hundred-year-old Restaurant), where they entertains both domestic and foreign guests every day and prominent artists come just to listen to the band’s music (including Berliner Philharmoniker, Gidon Kremer, Béla Szakcsi Lakatos, Tim Ries, Nigel Kennedy and many actors, professors and world-traveler artists).
Lajos Sárközi Jr. tries to nurture the disappearing, centuries-old musical culture. Its aim is to promote Hungarian culture as widely as possible.
The band traveled the world, they have performed among others in Germany, in France, in Belgium, in Italy and in the USA. They attend a lot of high-quality concerts and festivals in Hungary, they played at the Festival Academy and at Cziffra Festival, and this year they will take part in Kaposfest the fourth time, which is the most famous chamber music festival of Hungary. Their music partners were worldwide famous musicians like Kristóf Baráti, Elemér Balázs, Kálmán Oláh, Andreas Ottensamer, István Kohán, Tony Lakatos, Didier Lockwood, Jojo Mayer and Tim Ries, and they performed with the Hungarian Radio Symphony Orchestra as well. The band’s aim is to cultivate the Hungarian and the classical music, and to present new colours, which none of Hungarian gypsy bands has performed yet.
2002, 2009 Ede Zathureczky Hungarian violin competetion: First prize
2005: International Telemann violin competetion: First prize
2006: International Gabor Radics Jazz violin competetion: First prize
2013: International Janos Lavotta gipsy violin competetion: First prize
2013: MTVA- Hungarian Television prize
2014: Junior Prima Prize
2015: Hungarian Academy of Arts special prize