Concert of Gábor Presser
Legendary songs, heart-breaking silences
(This article was originally published in the county newspaper called Nógrád megyei Hírlap, on the first week of July, 2008.)
Heart-breaking silences, moments when the audience began singing spontaneously or broke into applause, and an incomprehensible outburst of love.
Then the feeling which takes you by the throat, when you almost cry, and you are getting goose bumps, the catharsis and cleansation, when you almost dissolve in the music. Something you only get, when you are listening to a real ARTIST. These things characterized the concert of Gábor Presser at the former County Hall in Balassagyarmat. All tickets were sold. No matter it was a Monday evening, count out the regular languidity, His performance attracted the citizens like a magnet.
And when a tubby male voice from one of the backseats shouted: Happy Birthday, Pici! (Presser's nickname), we all knew, Gábor Presser not only expresses the feelings of a generation through his music, binds generations together, but He, with his humble smile, chubby figure, characteristic glasses and his clumsy charm, became the Pici of the nation, the symbol of our unity.
Béla Majdán town historian, who organized the event to raise money for the István Kertész Foundation, more precisely for the renovation of the jewish cemetery and the tabernacle, invited Presser to play the piano. And that was the moment, when the magic, the enchanting performance begun. The artist started the concert with some of his more recent songs, and we couldn't agree more with the lines: "Its a crazy world, we are living in". Then he continued with the touching tunes of the Popfestival album like: "I'd carry you, I'd carry you", "Birds are coming", "Rock yourself", and the whole crowd was singing along, and they were singing along the Locomotiv GT songs as well (Everybody does it differently), and the melodies from the Omega era (like: Pearls in her hair , Ten thousand steps, Blue Woman or the Loft) were warmly welcomed too.
Gábor Presser also commented his own songs, we could learn, that he was only 23 years old, when he wrote the songs of the "Fictional Report from an American Pop-festival" album, for the Comedy Theatre of Budapest, and he only said to Tibor Déry a few words: "Maestro, if you go away, you will take this with you"! We also learned, that János Kóbor had his trademark white jeans, even when Presser haven't even saw a blue one. (Note: during the communism, it was illegal to wear or have foreign products, such as jeans.). And when Kóbor heard the tunes of the Pearl-Haired Girl, he simple said: "Have you got anything else?". This is how Ten thousand steps was born. Béla Majdán greeted the artist from the bottom of everybody's heart, because he just turned 60 not long before the concert. István Csábi and Sándor Kamarás played the anti-war song, Naplemente (Sunset) in honour of the singer, and they also performed his song Birds are coming. In the end József Sinágel recited a poem as a late bithday gift.
Balassagyarmat deserves the visits of such great artists - Béla Majdán said when this uplifting event ended. The visitors could check out an exhibition too, pictures from the lives of the youth of Balassagyarmat in the 50's and 60's, which were taken by the current mayor of the city, Lajos Medvácz, when he was young too.
(The exhibition was opened by Géza Pénzes, teacher, at the hallway of the former County Hall. It was opened on the week of the Presser concert.)
(Hereby we would like to thank Mr. Lajos Medvácz and Géza Pénzes for allowing us to exhibit their pictures)
Source: http://www.nport.hu/ ( an article of the newspaper: "Nógrád Megyei Hírlap")
(The concert took place at the former County Hall, on 2nd June, 2008.)
Translated by: Majdán Béla Jr.