The Children's Philharmonia of Szentegyháza HU/RO

The Children's Philharmonia of Szentegyháza, a unique ensemble, was founded 40 years ago in the Hungarian-speaking Transylvanian community of Vlahita (Szentegyháza, Romania) under the leadership of musical director Sándor Haáz. In December 2003, Sándor Haáz and the ensemble were awarded the "Prize for Preserving Hungarian Heritage". The ensemble comprises a total of 140 members between the ages of 10 and 20, including 100 choir members and 40 young musicians in the orchestra. Their repertoire consists of short classical pieces, specially orchestrated folk songs (from Hungarian and other cultures), as well as historical songs. To ensure the appropriate musical education and development of the children, the Children's Philharmonia employs a unique, autodidact pedagogical method in groups. The ensemble, affectionately known as Fili, has been performing regularly since 1990 and participates in international tours every summer. The children proudly perform in traditional Szekler costumes, preserving and protecting their ancient Hungarian heritage. Additionally they have their own badge and their instruments are mainly financed by their parents. The ensemble secures funding for its performances through donations, grants, competitions and partnerships.