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“Because you need music” – even at a university of economics

2024-05-13 10:30:00

A guy, who missed singing in a choir, a girl, who loves music but also joined the university’s football team, where a choir conductor was a teammate as well. Once these three people met: the Crescendo Corvinus came to life.
Budapesti Corvinus Egyetem

Author: Dobos Eszter

Cover photo: Marossy Aliz

The university’s choir was formed during the autumn of 2023, by two third year students, both studying international management, Anna Csontos and Tamás Madarasi. They both have a true passion for music ever since they were little: Anna’s family had a tradition of doing music together and Tamás was a member of not only the choir at his high school, but also at a school of music and even performed in musicals. Not to mention that both Anna and Tamás learned how to sing professionally and play some kind of an instrument.

When he started his studies at university, Tamás started to miss being a choir member and singing in general and later mentioned this to Anna, whom he met at the dormitory they were living in. After that Anna introduced Tamás to Sándor Kabdebó, whom she knew from the time she was interested in joining the football team. “I definitely need to mention how incredible it is that all of this was created by students. I’m impressed by the fact that at Corvinus University students not only just feel the need for a school choir, but also form it by themselves, because it’s all their doing and the other students’ who were open to it and bothered to join.” – highlighted Sándor Kabdebó.

The founders are grateful as well: “We also would like to say thank you to Sándor, who accepted our offer to become the leader of our choir, because when we came up with the idea, we weren’t quite sure how everything was going to come to life and become reality.”

While the tasks of a choir member seem clear and self-explanatory, the duties of a choir conductor might not be that straightforward to the untrained eye: “My duties depend on how the choir is and behaves. In this specific choir for example I can’t define it for sure, because this choir was organized by students and is actually managed very well, but again by students. Therefore, the conductor here is basically an employee and they know exactly what they expect from this employee to do. However, the professional and original role of the choir conductor is usually to know how to compose a piece of music. That’s my job, I have to make what we do sound beautiful. The challenge for me is to distinguish how much I can ask from the students, so that they still love what we do, but at the same time we don’t fall behind.” – explained Sándor Kabdebó.

„The huge pleasure is not only me hearing a clear musical note, but seeing them hear that this was actually well done and perfect, that yes, this sounded a little different than the ones before, that chords sound exactly the way they are supposed to. Also, when we phrase a melody so that it is musical and sensible.”

The Crescendo Corvinus is an amateur choir, which works within frameworks of a student organization and to which anybody can register for as an elective course – even through multiple semesters. Joining them doesn’t require any primary qualification, besides they have no admission or entrance exam either. Also don’t be scared to join them, because you fear your voice isn’t up to the standards: according to Sándor Kabdebó

“Although it is a lot of hard work, your singing voice can be improved even at this age (with only some rare exceptions).”

If you make an appearance every Friday between 5 and 7 pm, join the rehearsals, and in addition you are present at, at least on one performance during the semester, you get 3 credits for this course. “Performances, in my opinion, are the best way to create memories. If students have the chance to come, they definitely will.” – said Anna.

“Rehearsals are bilingual, since we have many international students as well, but fortunately they are very open-minded and also everyone tries to help them by translating everything, not to mention that Sándor is great at overcoming the language barriers. Before there are full group rehearsals we have to attend individual lessons for our voice parts, where the goal is to learn the melody more precisely; after that on the “big practice session”, after vocal warm-ups we can go through the musical piece more thoroughly.” – so gave us Anna an insight into the process of how rehearsals go. “Sándor sometimes takes a break to tell us more about some musical works, so that we don’t only gain practical skills, but also can widen our knowledge in art.” – she added. The linguistic diversity also appears in their repertoire: besides Hungarian, they have already chosen German, French, Latin and English musical pieces as well. They mainly focus on classics that are liked by everyone – this was even checked with the help of a questionnaire survey.

For students who are more into just listening to music, can still meet up the choir at certain Corvinus based programs (for example at the Teacher of the Semester Gala or at CommChristmas), but as the group gets more familiar with each other, they are planning on performing more often: In May they will attend the May Day celebration festival of a nursing home, at the end of the month they got a gig at a concert and in the near future they would like to participate in a choir-festival as well.

Source: Váczi Eszter

Since they are a student organization, they try to pay attention to bringing and keeping the team together: as part of their first program, they invited the past choir of Corvinus that is still functioning outside university frameworks, named Prelude Vegyeskart, to have a joined singing together and a chat afterwards. “The event was a success, and a good motivation for those, who have just joined our group.” – so evaluated Tamás the program. Besides they have already been to play laser tag, and it happens very often that they stay at school eating some snacks after rehearsals, just to be together.

“Being a member is like doing a sport: it gives you a challenge in a very different field of life. We all love our expertise, but we are happy to be able to immerse ourselves into something else and to connect with our classmates through something else; music can bring very different people together and can build valuable relationships” – said Anna about the advantages of joining them.

“From the perspective of organizing, it looks like a little business, a mini startup, because we gathered everything we needed by ourselves, we thought about how this could work effectively, even though there is still a lot to improve in the future. On the other hand, the social and professional value of it is also one aspect we can benefit from: we can sing together, evolve together, plus we try to form a community, which can be said to be unique amongst other groups around campus and which doesn’t have a general structure of a student organization” – shared Tamás the values of their initiative. “We would like to continue working on this case and bring this unique experience to as many people as possible.”

“Choir is a form of art, for which you don’t need any qualification in prior, which can be pursued by anyone and which can create things that couldn’t be created alone.”

– summarized everything the choir conductor.

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GEN.:2024.05.26. - 15:20:48