Artist – Interpreter

Tibor Varga is considered as one of the greatest musicians of the 20th century. Eminent violinist, soloist, conductor and creator of a new style of violin playing, he has marked the cultural history of his time.

His repertoire as a soloist, conductor and interpreter of chamber music comprises some 1000 different compositions, among others

  • more than 30 World Premières, including the Violin Concertos by Blacher, Krenek, Nyström, Paccagnini, Prado, Seiber, Skalkottas and Zillig
  • numerous National Premières in different countries, e. g. the Violin Concertos and other works by Bartók, Berg, Bleuse, Schönberg, Strawinsky, Valen etc.

Numerous works were interpreted by Tibor Varga both as a soloist and as a conductor, also simultaneously, e. g. the Violin Concertos by Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Mozart, Paganini etc.

Violinist and Soloist

As a soloist, Varga played under the baton of the most renowned conductors, such as Ansermet, Bernstein, Böhm, Boulez, Ferrara, Fricsay, Furtwängler, Markevitch, de Sabata, Solti

He recorded the great works of classic and contemporary composers for EMI, Columbia, Deutsche Grammophon and other distinguished labels, with such renowned orchestras as the Philharmonia Orchestra London and the Berlin Philharmonic.

Tibor Varga’s performances and recordings of the Violin Concertos and other works of Beethoven, Brahms, Nielsen, Tchaikovsky etc. are recognized as definitive interpretations and have become major reference points for future interpreters. His Bach and Mozart are a model of style, strength and self assurance.

Famous for his sublime interpretations of the classical repertoire, since the 1940s Tibor Varga has moreover been considered as a pivotal figure in 20th century music. Through his interpretations, he raised the Violin Concertos and other works of Bartók, Berg and Schönberg to the status of »classics« of the repertoire, assuring them a prime position in musical life.

He gave the Vienna première of the Berg Violin Concerto under Hermann Scherchen, and later gave the First performance of this work in Australia.

At the Royal Albert Hall, London, where he was regularly the guest artist at the Promenade Concerts, he played the Violin Concertos by Berg, Brahms, Schoenberg, Shostakovich and Tchaikovsky to the enthusiastic acclaim of audiences and the warm praises of critics.

Tibor Varga’s great interpretation of the Violin Concerto of Arnold Schoenberg at its 1949 European première has become legendary. Schoenberg, after hearing Tibor Varga’s recording of this work, wrote a letter – an historic accolade paying tribute to his talent and thanking him for the “superb interpretation” of his work. The composer wrote the following to him:

“Your performance resonates as if you had known the work for 25 years. Your whole interpretation is mature, expressive, marvellous. I can assure you that I have never heard a performance which so precisely reflected my intentions in every detail. I would like to be younger to write more music for you.”

Tibor Varga was the soloist of numerous World Premières, among them works composed for him and/or dedicated to him, such as the Violin Concertos by Blacher, Krenek, Nyström, Prado, Seiber, Zillig

Conductor

Following the advice of his close friend Franco Ferrara, one of the most highly regarded conductors of the 20th century, in the early 1950s Tibor Varga began conducting professionally and developed an equally outstanding reputation in this musical discipline. In 1954, he founded the Tibor Varga Chamber Orchestra (1954–1988), the repertoire covering more than 500 different works, from the Baroque (Bach, Corelli, Händel, Vivaldi…) up to the 20th century (Bartók, Krenek, Schönberg, Shostakovitch …). In the 1960s, he created a symphony orchestra, the Tibor Varga Festival Orchestra (1964–2001) in order to perform the main symphonic repertoire (symphonies, concertos). After 1988, the Orchestre de l’Académie Tibor Varga (1989–2002), a full-season chamber orchestra, adopted the role of the former Tibor Varga Chamber Orchestra.

In addition, Tibor Varga was regularly invited to conduct orchestras of international renown.

Makes History…

                     The Herald, Sydney

Tibor Varga Violinist and Conductor

As a soloist, conductor and interpreter of chamber music, Tibor Varga performed about 1000 different works, among them the main works of the violin repertoire, including some 300 violin concertos.

  • more than 30 World Premières, including the Violin Concertos by Blacher, Krenek, Nyström, Paccagnini, Prado, Seiber, Skalkottas and Zillig
  • numerous National Premières in different countries, e. g. the Violin Concertos and other works by Bartók, Berg, Bleuse, Schönberg, Strawinsky, Valen etc.
  • J. S. BACH : the complete works for strings (Sonatas, Sonatas and Partitas for Violin solo, Concertos), all of the Brandenburg Concertos and Overtures as well as several Concertos for Harpsichord and Cantatas
    (furthermore at the piano, by heart : Das Wohltemperierte Klavier, vol. 1 & 2)
  • to mention also : the memorable execution of the Messiah by G. F. Handel
  • BARTOK : the works for violin : Violin Concertos no. 1 and 2, Sonatas for Violin and Piano, Solo Sonata (Premières of these works in different countries) ; Divertimento for Strings ; several String Quartets ; Musik for Strings, Percussion and Celesta etc.
  • BEETHOVEN : Violin Concerto and Romances for Violin and Orchestra ; all of the Violin Sonatas ; Chamber Music : Trios, String Quartets, Grand Fugue, Quintets, Septet ; Piano Concerto no. 2 ; Overtures : Coriolan, Egmont ; Symphonies no. 1 to no. 8
  • BRAHMS : Violin Concerto, Double Concerto for Violin, Violoncello and Orchestra ; the Sonatas, Chamber Music : Trios, Quartet, Quintet, Sextet ; Symphony no. 1
  • HAYDN : different Concertos (for piano, organ, oboe, trumpet, violin, violoncello) ; Chamber Music : Violin Sonatas, Trios, String Quartets ; more than 15 Symphonies ; Oratorio The Creation
  • MOZART : all of the Violin Concertos ; most of the Violin Sonatas ; Chamber Music (Trios, Quartets, Quintets) ; the great Divertimenti and Serenades (e. g. Posthorn, Kleine Nachtmusik, Musikalischer Spass) ; 10 Piano Concertos : e. g. KV 414, KV 466, KV 488, other Concertos (for flute, flute and harp, clarinet, oboe) ; several Overtures (Figaro, Don Giovanni, Magic Flute) ; more than 15 Symphonies, e. g. KV 425 (Linz), KV 504 (Prague) and the last three : KV 543, KV 550 in G minor and KV 551 (Jupiter)
  • SCHUBERT : Symphonies no. 4, no. 5 and no. 8 (Unfinished) ; Chamber Music (Trio, Quartets, Quintets, Octet) ; Rondo for Violin and Orchestra ; Rondo brillant for Violin and Piano, Phantasy for Violin and Piano