October 10th, 2011

Budapest mayor dismisses outcry over appointment of theater director considered far rightist

The winner of the tender to become Új Színház director György Dörner has published his bid, which includes the sentence “Hungarians will declare war on the liberal entertainment state, which has sunk to the brothel level”.

Dörner will take up the post from next February, with MIÉP leader István Csurka as his “intendant”.

The theatre will be renamed Hátország (Hinterland), Népszabadság writes.

The Hungarian theatre society sent an open letter to mayor István Tarlós after he vetoed “a majority professional opinion” of 6-2 in favour of the present director István Márta, and chose Dörner instead.

The letter added that the decision has increased the theatrical community’s and voters’ beliefs that the only motivations of theatre appointments are political.

However Tarlós dismissed the open letter as “inconsiderate, irritating and contemptible”.

City Hall press chief Mária Somlyó Szűcs said Tarlós considers the dispute closed, adding that City Hall finds it unacceptable that “the smallest change elicits such an aggressive response from theatre directors”.

Csurka said he would like to see the theatre perform new plays with “public themes”, such as former prime minister Ferenc Gyurcsány, and the history of Hungary’s privatisations.

Both the Socialists and Politics Can Be Different (LMP) protested the appointments.

Philosopher Ágnes Heller said “a theatre has been handed to the far right, and racists”.

The website of Der Spiegel carried an article at the weekend entitled Far Rightists Take Over Running of a Theatre, which described Csurka as “a well known anti-Semite”. Belgium’s RTL described Dörner and Csurka as “far-right figures”, adding that their appointment has filled the entire Hungarian theatrical community with anxiety.

Preparations for a protest on October 21 have been initiated on the social networking website Facebook.

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  • Freedom

    The far-left doesn’t want to give up power over cultural, historical, educational, media, or herritage institutions, because they want to brainwash every generation.

    The fact is, the left, has learned quite well that you don’t need dictatorship to shape society and control the direction of society, you just need influence over education and arts to create a defacto dictatoship in a democracy.

    • Géza

      that is a fact!!!

      • Elle

        It sure is a fact! And this is funny: ‘… has filled the entire Hungarian theatrical community with anxiety’. What are they anxious about … the possibility of able actors and dramatists breaking into the scene?

  • new face in hell

    Purity of essence.

  • Doktor Kotász

    Much ado for nothing. Hungarian culture is in danger but not because of the new directors, but the lack of fiancing..

    Let’s see if there is demand out there for new acts, let the market decide…
    Lets give them a chance to prove their talent.. Or the lack of it.

    Csurka was a household name in the 70’s, 80’s.. One of the most talented writer.. His name, liberals claim, was tainted by his policital career.

    Yep, he may be an anti-semite.. Other don’t like Hutus, Mongolians,or strawberry jam.. That is not a reason to exclude someone from a job.
    that’s my view.

  • Viking

    However Tarlós dismissed the open letter as “inconsiderate, irritating and contemptible”.

    City Hall press chief Mária Somlyó Szűcs said Tarlós considers the dispute closed, adding that City Hall finds it unacceptable that “the smallest change elicits such an aggressive response from theatre directors”

    Well that Budapest Mayor find no problem to appoint MIEP leader Csurka to managing a theatre is of course not anything strange, it is just straight on what he earlier, in the Spring of 2010 claimed – ‘Fidesz and Jobbik share the goals, but differ on tactics’
    “Jobbik” came very much out of defectors from MIEP and Csurka’s authoritarian leader-style and his open anti-Semitism
    “Jobbik”, before Morvai joined the party, toned down its anti-Semitism, then it stopped them from growing and it was part of the tactic to stand separate from MIEP
    Csurka was known as ‘the old man that never could stop talking about jews’, which was not so interesting before
    And still is not for “Jobbik”, it is still more important to promote ‘antiziganism’, then hat is a better vote-winner (political whores as they are…)
    .
    So this is all logic and shows which side inside Fidesz Tarlos belongs to, something that will come and hunt him a day in the future
    For Budapest and Hungary this just means even more isolation from abroad, then Csurka is not really ‘kosher’ outside Hungary, together with his supporters, like Tarlos

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