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2015 Performers

Zsuzsanna Seres

Zsuzsanna Seres who was born in Hungary where she received her training in Hungarian Traditional Folk Dancing and singing.

Hungarian Folk Singer
Member of: Életfa Hungarian Folk Band -
The Életfa Hungarian Folk Band is from the New Jersey/New York area. The group’s members specialize in and present the authentic, archaic folklore from the villages of present-day Hungary, Transylvania, Romania, Slovakia and beyond, delivered in a style suitable for Western audiences.

Folk dance teacher
Leader of: Rózsafa Ensemble, Incorporation -
The Rózsafa Ensemble is a nonprofit, educational organization dedicated to preserving and promoting Hungarian folk music, dance, and tradition. The mission of the ensemble is to teach Hungarian folk dance traditions to children and young adults.

Happening Band: Geza Arany, Klaudia Tischner and Robert Vargha from Hungary

Happening Band, arriving from Hungary, was invited again after their highly successful gig last year at the festival. Their repertoire includes hundreds of songs from well known evergreen hits to the freshest Hungarian and international music and the band’s own songs. Apart from Hungary they have been invited and reinvited to several countries around Europe.

Their clients include cultural institutions, companies, event organizers and individuals. They regularly play at concerts, balls, street parties, corporate events, school partes and family gatherings (weddings, birthdays etc.). Band members: Klaudia Tischner – vocals, Robert Vargha– keyboard and guitar, Geza Arany– lead guitar, István Gallo– drums. The members are all trained musicians with music teacher and performer qualifications. In addition to their musical knowledge they pay special attention to their polyphonic vocals and the authentic sound.

Forrás Hungarian Folk Band from Vancouver Canada

Forrás Hungarian Folk Band from Vancouver, Canada

Forrás Banda (pronounced: FOUR-rahsh BUN-duh) was formed in 1997. Since then it has grown to become a driving force in the Hungarian folk scene in North America. The ensemble plays traditional village music from Central Europe and its members have regularly studied with master musicians in Hungary and Transylvania.

Forrás Banda's performances are both entertaining and educational as the players present the traditional lifestyle and work of the peasant musician. They have a broad repertoire accompanying dance troops, presenting musical concerts and the traditional Táncház (Hungarian folk dance parties).

Forrás Banda prides itself in the authenticity of its music. Their work focuses on the acquisition, preservation and presentation of their Hungarian musical heritage. Their repertoire also includes music of Romanian and Romani origin but particularly focuses on music from Transylvania. They play stringed instuments such as violin, a modified viola called the kontra and double bass.

Forrás Banda also plays more unique instruments such as the cimbalom (hammered dulcimer), furulya (shepherd's flutes), duda (bagpipes), ütőgardon (percussive cello), tapán (moldavian drum), koboz (moldavian lute) and tambura (tamburica).

Residing in Vancouver and Seattle the band performs regularly entertaining audiences across Canada and the US.

Le Petit Pas

The main artistic goal of Le Petit Pas is to bring the highest quality ballet and dance productions to California, with mostly European guest artists and new emerging ballet dancers.

We are keen on building our Junior Company and providing exceptional training as well as performance and networking opportunities, which help the young dancers to develop as artists and later support them to find a job to pursue their dance career. Alexandra Lengyel artistic director of Le Petit Pas is dedicated to represent the best of Hungarian dance, music and culture.

Zina Bozzay

Zina Bozzay is a singer and teacher of traditional Hungarian folk songs, who learned the songs from master singers and villagers in Hungary. Currently based in San Francisco, she brings her research and voice to a range of local, national, and international communities through her teaching and performances.
Zina holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Music, performs frequently as a solo singer and ensemble member, actively continues her research in Hungary, and teaches folk songs around the Bay Area, including her own singing circle.

Diana Pray - Soprano

Hungarian-American soprano Diana Pray specializes in early, Baroque, and modern music, making her Bay Area singing career with companies including the American Bach Soloists, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, San Francisco Opera, SF Renaissance Voices, Volti, and sfSound.
She is delighted to perform at the reborn Hungarian Heritage Festival in each of its four wonderful years, especially this year, with pianist Bálint Sapszon. Diana thanks the Festival’s organizers and all Bay Area Hungarian groups and performers for countless opportunities to live her heritage through music.

Bálint Sapszon

Pianist Bálint Sapszon was born in Budapest to a family of noted musicians. Educated early in the Kodály and Bartók schools, he graduated the Ferenc Liszt Academy of Music as composer, arranger, and music theory teacher, studying piano and classical and jazz composition techniques.
He moved to Los Angeles in 2007 to study film scoring, from which point his prolific work has been performed internationally. Bálint performs piano internationally and has received various national and international awards, including the Fulbright Scholarship. He has served on and led various Hungarian culture and arts organizations in Los Angeles until his 2014 move to the Bay Area, where he actively continues his Hungarian cultural event volunteer and organizational work.

Hannah Addario-Berry

Originally from British Columbia, cellist Hannah Addario-Berry is a sought-after soloist, chamber musician, and teacher.
A fierce advocate of the music of today, Hannah has been a core member of contemporary music ensembles in Montreal and SF. In 2015 she is celebrating the 100th birthday of Zoltán Kodaly’s Cello Sonata with a North American tour, and by commissioning companion works from four talented 21st century composers.

More details at:

A Beautiful Violin

A Beautiful Violin comprises the collaboration of Tibor and Yelena. Tibor demonstrates his artistry as a DJ, violist and entertainer, while Yelena provides a canvas with her skilled accompaniment on the piano. Tibor and Yelena play a variety of cultural songs, including Italian, Irish, Vietnamese, Chinese, and of course, Hungarian. Today they will treat us to beautiful Gypsy and Nóta music in the engaging and playful style they are known for.

Tibor Horvath - Violinist
Tibor Horvath, a Bay Area native, began playing the violin at the age of 8. At age 12, he began studying with Istvan Farkas, a Hungarian Gypsy, for a period of two years. At 16, he started performing in restaurants and for private engagements, and continued his musical education with various other teachers. His father came to the USA from Hungary in 1956.

Yelena Savchenko - Pianist
Yelena Savchenko came to the United States from Russia in 1990. She has a degree in piano performance and a degree in music theory, and was a music teacher at the Khmilnitsky Music College in the Ukraine. Tibor and Yelena met through a mutual friend and began performing together in February, 1992. They have been making their living playing Gypsy music since 1996, and currently play for private engagements.

63 Bovet Rd. #342, San Mateo, CA 94402 - (650) 345-3886 -

Laszlo Tihanyi

Laszlo Tihanyi is a native of Hungary and has resided in Oakland, California since September 2013.
Since his arrival, Laszlo has been the Assistant Artistic Director and Principal Dancer of Eszterlanc Hungarian Folk Dance Ensemble.

His background as a amateur Hungarian folk dancer and dance teacher has led the group to invite him from Hungary for leadership and teaching roles in the United States.

Laszlo received his Bachelor of Science in Hungarian folk dancing and folk dance coaching from the Dance Academy Budapest, Hungary.

Eszterlanc Folk Ensemble

Eszterlanc Folk Ensemble

The Eszterlanc Hungarian Folk Ensemble is a performing group based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Our mission is to promote and present traditional Hungarian folk dances and to preserve the history of Hungarian folk culture in all its forms.

The dance group has been celebrating and showcasing Hungarian folk culture in the Bay Area since 1977 through presentations to the Hungarian community and the general public.

The Ensemble consists of twenty to forty adults ranging from age 14 and up. Most are of Hungarian heritage, although membership has never been limited to those with Hungarian backgrounds. The dancers receive their training in the Ensemble as well as from guest teachers and at workshops statewide. The community served by Eszterlanc is vast, as appearances include international festivals, social events, patriotic holidays, and ethnic events. The Hungarian community alone, the group's most supportive audience, numbers in the tens of thousands in California.

Description of dances Eszterlanc will perform.

Mazsola Hungarian Children's Folkdance Ensemble

Mazsola Hungarian Children's Folkdance Ensemble was founded in 2007 in Hayward, CA. The ensemble's mission is to enrich the lives of children from all ethnic backgrounds by introducing them to Hungarian folk culture through dance, music, and folklore with the goal of preserving and passing on the Hungarian heritage. In its three years, the group has grown from ten young dancers to over thirty and expanded from one class to three classes of different age groups, ranging from age 3 to 13. The ensemble performs several times throughout the year in various community events. Mazsola dancers gather every Saturday to share their joy of Hungarian dancing and music in a fun, friendly and engaging environment.

Face Paint Events specializes in fun, professional, and custom services for all events.

Our entertainment services include: Face Painting, Balloon Twisting, Henna Tattoos, Glitter Tattoos. Face Painting options range from cheek art, partial face, full face, or body!

We always use high quality face paints that are FDA approved and safe. Safety is our highest priority and it does not sacrifice quality. The colors are brilliant and compliment our elaborate designs.

Harangvirág Játszóház

A group of enthusiastic and energetic Hungarians established Harangvirág Játszóház to bring together Hungarian children and their families living in the San Francisco Bay area and enrich their cultural experience by bringing to life Hungarian folk stories in our puppet shows, learning more about our rich Hungarian folk world through stories, songs and children plays, getting created at our crafting table, learning Hungarian crafts.

Our first performance as Harangvirág Játszóház was during the 2014 Hungarian Heritage Festival in Belmont, where our little group at that time brought alive the famous Hungarian story, Ludas Matyi and got crafty at our crafts table. Each member of our group has participated in different children programs either as performer or organizer in the past years. Each member is a volunteer, giving her free time, experience, creativity to this wonderful cause.

Hungarian Heritage Festival

Hungarian Heritage Festival strives to keep the Hungarian culture alive in San Francisco Bay Area.