The Kodály Choir founded by György Gulyás in 1955 worked as the choir of the Secondary Music School at the time its foundation. The choir (as a girls’ choir at that time) achieved its rst international success on the International Choir Competition of Langollen, Wales in 1958. One year later its victory in Arezzo started the career as a mixed choir. The Kodály Choir has been working as a professional choir since 1971; it is sponsored by Debrecen, the second largest town in Hungary. The repertoire of the ensemble is very rich; it ranges from the unaccompanied, a’capella pieces through the European classical oratorios to the newest contemporary choral works. Several world presentation and rst Hungarian presentation of compositions of Hungarian and foreign compsers may be attached to the choir, but naturally the compositions of Zoltán Kodály are in the centre of the repertoire.
A non-exhaustive list of the most important guest conductors: Miklós Erdélyi, János Ferencsik, Iván Fischer, Ervin Lukács, Ádám Medveczky, András Mihály, Vilmos Rubányi, Viktor Vaszy, Tamás Vásáry, Pierre Cao, Lamberto Gardelli, Martin Haselböck,
Jürgen Jürgens, Dmitry Kabelevsky, Kobayashi Ken-Ichiro, Ennio Morricone, John Nelson, Helmuth Rilling, Karolos Trikolidis, Howard Williams, Peter Broadbent, Zoltán Kocsis, Karl Jenkins, and Florian Helgath.
The choir – led by Máté Szabó Sipos as chorus master since 2016 – in a close cooperation with the name changing orchestra (Kodály Philharmonic Debrecen) as a part of the Kodály Philharmonic Debrecen (led by Dániel Somogyi-Tóth) by the permission of Mrs. Kodály, Sarolta Péczely. This synergy o ers a huge potential; the Kodály Choir gets more space, reputation and fame in the music of Hungary, or even of the world and taking forward the mission of Zoltán Kodály together with the orchestra.
The Kodály Choir keeps in contact continuously with the leading chorus masters and conductors of the world. Since 1955 it has given more than 2500 concerts in more than 40 countries, for instance in the Kennedy Center, Washington, the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, and they gave concerts in Jerusalem, Manila, and even in Mexico City.