Hungarian Poetry Day

Hungarian cultural institutions and embassies around the world celebrate Hungarian Poetry Day. The institutes will promote the outstanding works of Hungarian poetry worldwide with short films, literary cafés, exhibitions, book launches and games. The occasion will also be used to commemorate poet János Pilinszky, on the centenary of his birth and the 40th anniversary of his death.

On Hungarian Poetry Day several institutes will screen short films of works by Hungarian poets on the social media platforms. Visitors can listen to poems in Helsinki by Attila József, in Warsaw by Sándor Petőfi and in Cairo by Gyula Juhász and Ervin Aranyosi. In Shanghai, Hungarian works will be recited in Chinese. On the Facebook page of the Hungarian Consulate General in Sao Paulo, a Brazilian Portuguese translation of Endre Ady's “Add nekem a szemeidet” (Give Me Your Eyes) can be watched, interpreted by the Hungarian-born translator Nelson Ascher.

On the occasion of Hungarian Poetry Day, the Hungarian Cultural Institute in Stuttgart joined Ákos Csermely's #versetmondanier Facebook campaign. A short film made from the recitations received in response to the institute's call for entries will be published on the Institute's Facebook page on 11 April.

The Hungarian Cultural Institute in London will screen on-line Gábor Reisz's film, "Bad Poems".

The Hungarian Cultural Institute in London will screen on-line Gábor Reisz's film, "Bad Poems".

The Collegium Hungaricum in Rome will screen the documentary film “Sándor Márai and Naples: The bitter taste of freedom” by Gilberto Martinelli. The film will be available on the institute's Facebook page from 11 April, 8pm, for 72 hours. Also on the institute's Facebook page, the fortnightly online literary coffee house will open on 12 April. The first coffee will be served in the company of poet János Lackfi and Dante. Lackfi, upon the invitation of the institute, wrote for the 700th anniversary of Dante's death a poem titled “The Psalm of the Thirty-Three Ultimate Dating Tips”. Richárd Janzer, the translator of the poem, Cinzia Franchi, a professor at the University of Padua, and Eszter Draskóczy, from the University of Szeged, will discuss the work.

The Hungarian Cultural Institute in London will screen on-line Gábor Reisz's film, Bad Poems, on the weekend in partnership with the National Film Institute.

The Hungarian Cultural Institute in Moscow will organize a wreath-laying ceremony and poetry reading at the bust of Attila József at the Margarita Rudomino All-Russia State Library for Foreign Literature. The event will be followed by the opening of an exhibition of posters titled Hungarian Proverbs, which will provide an insight into Hungarian culture and language through the prism of Hungarian proverbs and the use of printing tools. The Hungarian Cultural Institute in Sfântu Gheorghe will open online the exhibition of illustrations of contemporary Hungarian children's poems, titled Versképek (Verse Images). The exhibition can be visited at the Casa De Cultură in Odorheiu Secuiesc. The Collegium Hungaricum in Rome has also launched a competition for children living in Italy in connection with the exhibition “Versképek”. The results will be announced shortly at the soon-to-open Versképek exhibition. In Tokyo, an exhibition of haiku by Hungarian and Japanese poets, titled Flower Language, will open to the public.

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In Ljubljana, on the occasion of the Hungarian Poetry Day the Hungarian Cultural Institute will launch a series of lectures titled Literature and Music to be held every two weeks online with János Lackfi. The Hungarian Embassy in Tel Aviv will commemorate Itamár Jáoz-Keszt, the renowned Hungarian-born Israeli poet-translator who translated the works of many contemporary and classical Hungarian poets into Hebrew. The commemoration, which will take place on 11 April, will be accompanied by a conference with readings of works by Hungarian poets in Hebrew and Hungarian. The programme will be attended by Ágnes Gergely, poet, István Turczi, poet, Yaakov Barzilai, Israeli poet, Gábor T. Szántó, writer, poet and Sándor Silló, director. The audience is welcomed by Dr Shilhav Kest.

In Berlin, the public will be able to listen online to contemporary poetry performed by their authors as part of the #listentothepoet initiative on lyrikline.org. The selection will include poems by Anna Terék, whose poetry collection "Dead Women", in the virtuoso translation of Orsolya Kalász and Éva Zádor, was included in the international poetry recommendations of the German Academy for Language and Literature (Deutsche Akademie für Sprache und Dichtung) for 2021.

Students studying Hungarian at the Hungarian Cultural Institute in Delhi can learn about the life and poetry of Endre Ady, and listen to his poem “I would love to be loved”. The results and the winners of the Sándor Kőrösi Csoma Hungarian Studies competition will also be announced on the occasion.

János Lackfi will be a guest of the online literary café of the Collegium Hungaricum in Rome

János Lackfi will be a guest of the online literary café of the Collegium Hungaricum in Rome

The Hungarian Cultural Institutes in Bratislava, Tallinn, Bucharest and the Collegium Hungaricum in Vienna commemorate János Pilinszky, one of the most important poets of the 20th century on the centenary of his birth and 40th anniversary of his death. The Jókai Theatre in Komárom, at the invitation of the Hungarian Cultural Institute in Bratislava, has prepared a compilation of Pilinszky's poems, which will be available on the Institute's website from 11 April. The Hungarian Cultural Institute in Tallinn will make available on its Facebook page a radio recording made in 1990 of Pilinszky's poems in Hungarian and Estonian. On the Youtube channel of the Collegium Hungaricum in Vienna, jazz singer and lyricist Flora Kiss and actor-director Miklós Vecsei H. will read from their favourite Hungarian poems, with a special focus on the 100th anniversary of János Pilinszky’s birth. On the Facebook page of the Hungarian Cultural Institute in Bucharest, a series of programmes will celebrate Pilinszky throughout the day. Those interested can watch a portrait film about Pilinszky, titled “In Star Net” by Attila Mispál, or listen to musical works inspired by Pilinszky and a Pilinszky poem in Hungarian and Romanian by the InFusion band and the Kurtág couple, interpreted by Hungarian and Romanian actors, teachers, writers, radio and TV journalists and singers. The day will be closed with Pilinszky's poem Apokrif, recorded and read by the poet himself.

János Pilinszky

János Pilinszky

The Hungarian cultural institutes will also invite the public to play; in London they can answer a quiz about Hungarian poems and poets, in Helsinki they can vote for the best Hungarian poem, and in Bucharest they can solve a crossword puzzle.

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The buildings of Hungarian cultural institutions abroad will also pay tribute to the great Hungarian poets on this day. In London and in Berlin, Hungarian poems on colourful post-its will cover the walls of the institutes, as part of the their traditional #postitpoetry initiative. The spectacular installation encourages passers-by in London and in Berlin to read and take with them the outstanding works of Hungarian poetry in English and in German. What is more, the window of the gallery of the Hungarian Cultural Institute in Helsinki will draw the attention of the Finnish public to the Hungarian Poetry Day with a poem that will be visible from the street.