Life and work
Gárdonyi was born in Budapest. His mother, the pianist Maria Weigl, studied at the Franz Liszt Academy of Music with Liszt's pupil, István Thomán, at the same time as Béla Bartók. At the age of 17, Gárdonyi began his studies in composition with Zoltán Kodály at the Academy. After studying with Paul Hindemith and Arnold Schering in Berlin, he worked as a professor at the Franz Liszt Academy of Music from 1941 until 1967. He also led the faculty for Protestant sacred music until it was closed by the communists in 1949.
His oeuvre includes sacred music, orchestral works and chamber music. Three of his motets for choir a cappella were published in German by Schott, "Finnisches Busslied", "Der Herr ist mein Hirte" (Psalm 23) and "Singet dem Herren" (Psalm 96). Gárdonyi's musicological research yielded findings related to Bach and Liszt. His works were published in Germany, Sweden and the United States. Gárdonyi lived in Germany with his family beginning in 1972. He died in Herford a few weeks after his 80th birthday.
Performances and recordings
Some of Gárdonyi's works were recorded, including three organ sonatas and the Partita sopra Veni Creator Spiritus, played by Dezső Karasszon, and Szvit-regi stilusban (Suite No. 1 in old style). The Partita is a symphonic work, introduction (Largo), theme (Lento), four variations and finale (Allegro maestoso), based on Martin Luther's melody "Komm, Gott Schöpfer, heiliger Geist".
- Elemző formatan (1949, 1963, 1979, 1990), Publisher: Editio Musica Budapest, ISMN: M080039953
- Serenade No. 2 for string orchestra (1957)
- Concerto for clarinet and orchestra (1942, 1982)
- Drei Bilder zur Karwoche (Three Images of Holy Week) for organ and string orchestra (1966)
- Chamber music
- Zwei leichte Stücke (Two Easy Pieces) for violin and piano
- Reigen (Körtánc)
- Mädchentanz (Leánytánc)
- Könnyű hegedű-duók (Easy Violin Duos) for two violins
- Fantasie über ein ungarisches geistliches Lied (Fantasy on a Hungarian Hymn) for violin and organ
- Rondo capriccioso for violin and piano (1941)
- Sonata for cello and piano (1944)
- Sonata for tuba and piano (1948–1951)
- Sonata No. 2 for viola and piano (1950)
- Két kis rapszódia (Two Little Rhapsodies; Zwei kleine Rhapsodien) for cello and piano (1954)
- String Quartet No. 3 (1954)
- Fantasie for oboe and piano (1956)
- Sonata "Il serioso ed il giocoso" for double bass and piano (1957)
- Sonatina for clarinet and piano (1959)
- Sonata for flute and piano (1960)
- Woodwind Quintet (1961)
- Sonata secunda (1947)
- Partita sopra Veni creator spiritus (1958)
- Weihnachtswiegenlied (Christmas Lullaby; Christmas Cradle Song; Karácsonyi bölcsődal) (1937)
- Psalm-Fantasie über die französische Melodie des 107. Psalmes (Fantasy on Psalm 107, Geneva Psalter) (1976)
- Drei Choralbearbeitungen (Three Chorale preludes)
- Ein feste Burg
- Mit Freuden zart
- Finnisches Bußlied
- Két praeludium (Two Preludes; Zwei Präludien)
- Meditatio in memoriam Zoltán Kodály (Meditation in Memory of Zoltán Kodály)
- Praeludium et fuga
- Könnyű szonatina (Easy Sonatina; Leichte Sonatine) (1952)
- Fünf Klavierstücke nach ungarischen Volksliedern (Five Pieces after Hungarian Folk Songs) for piano 4-hands
- Zöld erdőben, zöld mezőben (Green Woods, Green Fields), 15 Hungarian Folk Songs for piano 4-hands
- Fünf Lieder nach Gedichten von Rilke (Five Songs on Poems by Rilke) for soprano and piano (1940–1941); words by Rainer Maria Rilke
- Lobgesang nach Psalm 45 (Dicsérő ének; Song of Praise: Psalm 45) for mixed chorus, string orchestra and organ (1960, 1981)
- Adeste fideles for mixed chorus and organ (1974)
- Drei Motetten (Three Motets) for mixed chorus a cappella
- Drei biblische Kanons (Three Biblical Canons) for equal voices
- Du schöner Lebensbaum (You beautiful tree of life) for mixed chorus a cappella
- Danklied der Erlösten (Psalm 107) (Song of praise of the saved ones) for mixed chorus a cappella
- Ende September (End of September) for mixed chorus a cappella; words by Sándor Petőfi, German words by Walter Radetz
- Isten a mi oltalmunk: 46. Zsoltár (Psalm 46: God Is Our Refuge) for mixed chorus a cappella
- Lavonne Harris: "A biography of Zoltán Gárdonyi and analyses of organ, string, and choral works", 356 pages, University of Oklahoma, 1992
- "Zigeunerlieder ... Werke von Béla Bartók, Zoltán Gárdonyi, Zoltán Kodály und György Ligeti" (in German). vocalensemble-wuerzburg.de. 16 May 2010. Retrieved 30 August 2011.
- "Konzert mit besonderem Charakter" (in German). Augsburger Allgemeine. 2 October 2008. Retrieved 30 August 2011.
- "Three motets". Schott. 2011. Retrieved 31 August 2011.
- "Gardonyi, Zoltan". Naxos. Retrieved 30 August 2011.
- "Június 18, Orgonakoncert a Marktkirche-ben" (in German). ungvh.de. 18 June 2011. Retrieved 30 August 2011.
- "A biography of Zoltán Gárdonyi and analyses of organ, string, and choral works". books.google.com. 2011. Retrieved 31 August 2011.