Richard Kökény dancers, Jászberény - Hungary


Mss. Marianna Majorosi and Richárd KökényMy 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 for life.
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.
Tel:00 36-1-201-5017