Echo Summer Academy

We are happy to welcome the participants of the Summer Academy in the Károlyi kastély in Fehérvárcsurgó, the place where family always paid a deep respect for music, and where the collection of records and CDs and music books is developing constantly today.

Between 1844 and 1846, when the stately home was built, they created a music salon that was the ideal place for numerous "house concerts". After the reconstruction in 1999 we organised the first concert in the chapel, and with this, the series started off once again that brought back the tradition and recalled the athmosphere. Once the sounds of music are to be heard, the stately rejoices and comes to life…

The ideal conditions provided for the Summer Academy and the unusually calm environment will certainly inspire the participants of the Masterclass just as well - as it has all the musicians who have so far been a guest of the Károlyi kastély.

József Károlyi Foundation

Summer Academy


The name of the Károlyis, - one of the most well-known historical families in Hungary – has been agglutinated with the most noble purposes such as the support for science and art.

The Károlyi kastély in Fehérvárcsurgó, which is a place for several different kind of cultural events is also where we organise the Echo Summer Academy - with the artisitic guidance of Balázs Fülei - between the 14th and 21th of July, 2024. You can relax here after a stressful year; there are no exams, no compulsory pieces or instructions – only making music for the love of it. The environment is just the way every composer dreams it to be – an island far from the noise of the city: truly suitable for artistic work, the quality of which is guaranteed by the names of three teachers of the Liszt Academy in Budapest: Péter Kováts, violinist, István Varga, cellist and Balázs Fülei, pianist. Piano accompanists in string classes: Mária Kovalszki and Imre Dani.


Pinetrees older than a hundred years, lindens, oaks, chestnut trees, a small lake, bridges and promenades make up that giant, arboretum-like park in which the classicist style castle – the work of Miklós Ybl and Heinrich Koch – resides. From 1834, the property came to the possession of Count György Károlyi, one of the founder members of the Hungarian Scientific Academy. The current trustee, György Károlyi with his wife, Angelica created the József Károlyi Foundation that is responsible for the renovation and current operation of the building and also being a partner of the Echo Summer Academy.

The place, situated only 75 kms away from Budapest – with its halls suitable for peaceful practice, rehearsals, musical salons and concerts – is a perfect location. A real happy island in this fast-paced world.

Castle Károlyi with fountain
Castle park
Salon Bleu
Salon Rouge

Our Professors

Dénes Ludmány


Dénes Ludmány

Born in Hungary, Dénes Ludmány graduated at the University Mozarteum Salzburg with professor Thomas Riebl and Veronika Hagen. He also attended between 2000-2002 the Academy of the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra with professor Albrecht Rohde. Completed his studies at the Debrecen University with Gábor Pongrácz and studied string quartet at the Basel Music Academy with Walter Levin and Rainer Schmidt. He has been the winner of several top prizes and awards at different competitions, such as the 1995 International Viola Competition of Debrecen, Hungary, the 2002 International Viola Competition of Bled, Slovenia, and the 2004 Raiffeisen Classic Prize.

He has worked as the Principal Violist of the Salzburger Chamber Soloists as well as with the Camerata Salzburg. He has been soloist of the "Young Artists International" in the United States and worked as the viola player of the Austrian Ensemble for Contemporary Music (ÖENM). Between 2007 and 2011 he was member of the spanish Quiroga Quartet, with his ensemble Ludmany travelled through Europe and visited several countries in North- and South-America and Asia.

He is dedicated also to support contemporary music, as a soloist and with others as well. 2012-2018 he was principal violist of the Hungarian National Operahouse, and since 2018 he is member of the Hungarian National Philharmonic Orchestra. Ludmany is violist and founding member of the Sziget Quartet. Since 2022 he is professor for viola at the Music Faculty of the University of Debrecen, and professor for chamber music at the Liszt Academy in Budapest.

István Varga


István Varga

He was born in Subotica, studied at the Liszt Academy of Budapest, the Academy of Music in Belgrade and the Conservatory of Paris during his wanderer years. He returned to his homeland as a teacher, taught at the Academy of Music in Belgrade and Novi Sad. The establishment of the chamber orchestra Camerata Academica and the Goldberg String Trio are both connected to his name, and have been known as some of the most famous orchestras of ex-Yugoslavia. He organised monumental international chamber music festivals as the artistic director of the Novi Sad Music Festival, and also did several concerts meanwhile. Significant composers wrote pieces for him and he won the prize of the Association of Yugoslav Composers. He gave concerts at the most famous halls – such as at the Wigmore Hall of London, the Salle Gaveau in Paris and the Rahmanyinov Hall in Moscow. He regularly holds masterclasses in Hungary, Croatia and France. He moved to Hungary in 1999, he teaches cello at the Liszt Academy at the moment. His permanent chamber partner is Gábor Csalog pianist, with whom he regularly gives concerts in Hungary and abroad.

Balázs Fülei


Balázs Fülei

A pianist with Liszt Prize. Graduated at the department with the biggest history of the Liszt Academy in Budapest, studying from the fifth generation of Liszt’s students. He has more than thirty piano concertos in his repertoire, all the concertos of Beethoven, Brahms and Bartók among them. He has been one of the most employed performer of the Liszt Memorial Year in 2011. He worked together with several Hungarian and foreign symphonic orchestras, he gave solo and orchestra concerts on stages like the Konzerthaus in Vienna, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Kioi Hall in Tokyo, the NCPA in Mumbai and the Carnegie Hall in New York, where he debuted in 2008 with his solo recital. He is in contact with more Hungarian composers, series of premieres and radio records are connected to his name. His latest CD was released in 2015, on which he plays pieces of Beethoven, Brahms, Debussy and András Gábor Virágh. He has been teaching at the Academy of Music since 2012 and has been the Head of  the Department of Chamber Music from 2015. He has given masterclasses in China, India, Texas and in Israel, at the Tel Aviv University.

Oskar Varga


Oskar Varga

Oskar Varga studied with Albert Markov in New York and Katalin Kokas, Barnabás Kelemen in Budapest. He has attended masterclasses with Dejan Bogdanovich, Zakhar Bron, Maxim Rysanov, Boris Brovtsyn and Ivry Gitlis.

In 2014-2015 he was a member of the Kelemen Quartet with whom he toured through Europe's most prestigious chamber music halls, such as Leiszhalle, Hamburg;Wigmore Hall, London; Concertgebouw, Amsterdam; Palais de Bozar, Bruxelles; Musikverein,Vienna; Sala Verdi, Milano; Teatro La Fenice, Venice.

He appeared at such festivals as Lockenhaus Festival, Austria; Kaposfest, Hungary, Auer Festival, Hungary,Verbier Festival, Switzerland, International Musicians Seminar, Prussia Cove, UK.

He has collaborated with such artists as Miklós Perényi, Nicolas Altstaedt, Barnabás Kelemen, Katalin Kokas, Albert Markov, Alina Ibragimova, Patricia Kopatchinskaja, James Boyd, Jonathan Cohen, Maximilian Hornung, Maxim Rysanov, László Fenyő, Boris Brovtsyn and Zoltán Fejérvári.

Oskar Varga is currently a professor of chamber music at the Franz Liszt Academy of Music in Budapest.



We are expecting those violinists, cellists and pianists to the masterclass who are not only interested in the literature of their own instrument and the solo performance, but would also like to play music that is coming to life from the new knowledge collectively, as chamber music – something close to the heart of all the three professors - is going to have an important role besides the four classes with individual instruments at the Summer Academy. The hierarchical bounderies - so common during the year - won’t be present here, and there will be a chance of chamber performance and concerts together with the teachers. Of course, the Summer Academy will try to make use of the possibilities of the environment not just for professional purposes – here is a teaser, one of the several programs: wine tasting night for the participants of the course, in one of the most temptating wine cellars of the region.

Trainings and Workshops

Professors of the Echo Summer Academy hold special lectures about interpretation and instrumental playing from the view of the active musician.

During the Academy, special lectures will be given in different topics: musicology, folk music, improvisation, music history, and others. 

Moreover, the academy offers management consultations for the participants. 







The three professors of the Echo Summer Academy give an opening concert on 14 July, 2024, 8 PM. There are many performing possibilities for the participants during the Summer Academy. We will also host guest artists during the week and we organize concerts for all participants, they can play together in different formations, also together with the professors. 


At the end of the Echo Summer Academy the students take part in a closing concert on 20 July, 8 PM, and a ceremony after, organised by the Károlyi Foundation. On the other days of the Academy different workshops and roundtable-discussions await the participants with topics about the musical world.


For the detailed program, click here >>>







Application for 2024

Echo Summer Academy 14-21 July, 2024

Application deadline: June 12, 2024



Participation fee: 1890 Euro, which includes:

  • fees of the courses
  • accomodation in the castle’s hotel, in single rooms from 14 July until 21 morning
  • full board
  • participation on programs and concerts
  • possibility of practicing

We ask you to transfer a 500 Euros deposit after we had confirmed your participation.

Deadline to pay the remaining participation fee: 01 May 2024

Early bird registration with 10% discount until 1 February 2024.


Bank information:

Vita-Musica Nonprofit Ltd. 

H-2600 Vác, Edison u. 3. 

Tax number: 26123400-1-13 

Bank account number: 12026001-01612256-00100008

IBAN: HU05-12026001-01612256-00100008




With your application also send

  • a short CV
  • your planned repertoire for the course




For more information please contact:

Viki Farkas

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Károlyi kastély Hotel & Restaurant
2 Petőfi Sándor Street, Fehérvárcsurgó H-8052



Echo Summer Academy

is a project of the Vita-Musica Management

Vita-Musica Management