name is Richard Kökény. I was born on 22 April 1974, in Jászberény.
I spent my childhood in Jászapáti. I took the final examination in
the Eötvös József Secondary School, Budapest. After that I got 'First-grade
Qualification of folk-dance teacher in category C'. At the present
I'm a third-year, folk dance teacher major student at The National
Academy of Dance.
I was 6 when I began dancing in The new generation group of the Jászapáti
Folk Dance Company. My master was Erzsébet Kökény. From the age of
12 I've been dancing in the adult group, its leader is István Bakonyi.
I got to know The authentic folk dances of the Carpathian Region during
this time, and I also fried Transylvanian Rumanian dances of men.
I started teaching in the New generation groups in 1988. The First
National Festival of Solo Dances was held in Szarvas, here I won the
prize 'Bokrétás-dancer' for dancing 'haidau'. It wasmy first appreciation
as a solo dancer.
I applied for a finther training to the Folk Dance Studio of the Hungarian
State Folk Ensemble. (Wlich is under the guide of Sándor Tímár) My
aim was to hand over my Knowledge to my dancers. Meanielite I also
got admission to the Ensemble's Choir os Dances, so I've been member
of the group for more than eight years now.
I also had some apportumities to realize mission in solo dances. In
that time I won the prize 'Aranysarkantyús táncos' (dancer of golden
spur). Three times over, and it meant, as well, that I won the prize
As a result of fortunate acquintances I had the apportunity to work
together with Jolán Foltin, Annamária Neuwirth and Zoltán Zsuráfszki
in the dance-group 'Kis-bihari'; and with Edit Varga and Zoltán Varga
in the dance-group 'Csepel'. The Competition of Young Choreographers
was held in 1992 is Százhalombatta. I entered with the choreography
'Apáról fiúra…?' (From father from son…?), wlich was based on subjets
from Rábaköz. It is about traditions and their disappearance. It was
performed by the Jászapáti Folk Dance Company and it won extra in
performance and choreography.
In 1994 I was confered the title 'Young Master of Folk Art' by the
Ministry of Culture. Two years ago Zoltán Farkas colled me to the
'Kodály Dance Workshop' , and since then I got to know new sides of
folk-dances on today's stage. I made choreographies together with
Marianna Majorosi for the 'Csepel Dance Company' they were from Kalocsa,
Sárköz, Rábaköz and from Zsámbok (wlich is near the river Galga).
I have been the art assistant of the 'Tisza Dance Company' (from Szolnok)
since 1996. Its leader is Gábor Mihályi. This hind of pedagogical
work require continuous self-developement and it has a great impact
on my stage activity. I also was the artistic director of the 'Jászapáti
Folk Dance Company'. In this group-besides my dances. I revived some
older, classical choreographies and invited other authors, as well.
The group reached the country finals of the Ki Mit Tud?, and in the
new qualificational system it was with one point behind the title
'Eminent Ensemble'. I made some dances for the companies 'Vadvirág',
'Vadrózsa' (Budapest, Angyalföld, House of Children).
Gábor Mihályi osked me to collaborate with the Hungarian State Folk
Ensemble in two programmes. My work was to treat, teach and dramatize
authentic materials. I took paint in staging the following dance traditions:
-dances from the Jászság and dances from the Rumanian Gombostelke,
in the programme 'Régen volt, soká lesz...'. -dances from the Sárköz
and Rábaköz in the programme 'Virágozzál cédrusfa levelen' Gábor Mihályi
was also the person to recommend me the at assistant position at the
Tisza Dance Company, wlich I still perform. In this group I have the
appailnuity to choreographize. I put to stage mainly authentic materials
but at the some time I try to interneave the dances with my own thoughts.
The choreography 'Valahol, valamikor…' was the result of a cooperation
with Sue Foy and Gábor Mihályi. This work won the first prize in the
Folk Dance Festival, Szolnok, 1997, and it won the festivals grand
prize, as well. In autumin 1998 my choreography 'Strana' -performed
by the Tisza Dance Company- won extra prize in choreography.
From this year I've been working as an assistant in the Choir of (men)
dancers of the Hungarian State Folk Ensemble. Beside my work, I go
to collect new materials regularly. (For example I went to conect
to Szany, Elek, Szék, Zsámbok) I was on a festival in Transylvania,
where the Szék villages' traditional dancers met. There I collected
dances from Marossárpatak, Vajdaszentivány, Gernyeszeg. Fortunately,
I had the appartunity to collect material- together with The Musicological
Institution of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences- from the peasont
dancers, who come to the capital.
I use these-together with the earlier collected dances, technical
literature and audio-visual materials- to build up my stage works.
I plan for the future to recollect and retreat the children's ga.
My another plan is to revise and certify the academy's reports. I
feel my duty to take point in revining my region's folk dance culture;
and, besides, to write up the dances of Elek (It's a village of Rumanian
culture near the eastern border in Békés country ). I ashed László
Gál's help for this job. In the first half of 1999 I'd like to summerize
the dances of the Rábaköz villages. My ami is to reestimate the dance
traditions, etnography, national costummes and musical cultures of
Szany, Szil, Vitnyéd, Kapuvár, Rábatamási and Bogyoszló. I will use
the previously collected materials and special literatures for this
work, and I'd also like to stage them. Mezőség is one of our biggest
reagons, we can find several villages in it. Hungarians, Rumanians,
Gypsies, Saxons and Hebrews (ethnic groups) may live together even
in one village.
My plan is to collect the dances of Magyarszovát, Visa, Vajdakamarás
and Mezőkeszü. I'm also curious about the Rumanian ethnic villages
Keménytelke and Gombostelke; and the Gipsy dances of Gernyeszeg, Szászvesszős
and Szászcsávás. For the next three years I plan three choreographies
each about the regional dance cultures of Elek, Marossárpatak and
Rábaköz. Until the end of the third year I'd like to stage a Hungarian
folk-tale, with the use of the Carpathian region's dances.
Adresse: Hungarian State Folk Ensemble
H-1011 Budapest, Corvin square 8.