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The Good Life in Aggtelek National Park Part 87: Maszkura és a Tücsökraj and Theatre Brass Concerts

Maszkura és a TücsökrajThe annual one month long Kazincbarcika Kolor Fesztival also kicked off last week, and on Monday we travelled to Edelény to see an unfamiliar band. Last year we went to Dubicsány to see Bea PalyaMaszkura és a Tücsökraj played in the courtyard of the local Borsod Museum. We had no idea what kind of music it would be, but it was close and Kata had the evening off. An improvement on last year was a big food wagon parked off to the side offering fast food like burgers, hotdogs, gyros and shish kabob. Unfortunately the beer was not fresh.

After the 1st five songs we were ready to run for it, but then it got better. The band are good musicians, and obviously enjoy themselves on stage. I could have done without the rap, but it was not too bad. It was much more enjoyable when they played funky stuff. Besides the usual drum kit, bass, synthesiser and electric guitar, they mixed it up with a slide guitar, voice-synthesiser guitar and accordion. When the lead vocalist sang a song with Pinocchio in it, the coin finally dropped and I understood the lead singer's getup with top hat, long black coat and pointy shoes, as well as the cricket in the group's name - Jiminy Cricket. In the end we were glad we went.Theatre Brass

Later in the week we went to Bodvaszilas' Village Day celebrations. Friday night featured Miskolc-based Theatre Brass, made up of musicians from the Miskolc National Theatre and Miskolc Symphonic Orchestra and trumpeter Imre Várkoly from the Miskolc Dixieland Band. Other members include: Péter Gál (trumpet), Sándor Horváth (French horn), Zoltán Kakuk (trombone) and János Dobos (tuba) who bravely stepped in at the last minute for the absent Tamás Veres. The concert was held in the Catholic church on the hill nearby the MagtArt Arts Granary. We had never been inside the church before, and were surprised to see how well renovated it was, mostly in pastel colours. I did not expect a brass band to play classical music, and in fact they do not usually. But, they were invited to play and rose to the challenge. I especially enjoyed the Marricone, Morley and music school pieces, all of which could have easily been scored for a Western film. Péter Gál was extremely informative between songs. For example, I learned that music was almost always heard in churches because of the organ, until brass instruments became more versatile and music could be played anywhere as if it were on an organ. Mozart also hated the trumpet, and rarely included space for it in his compositions. Just short snippets of full pieces were performed, which at first annoyed me, but since I am not normally a classical music fan, I was also grateful. It was also good because we were able to hear a larger sampling of music. As we were leaving we ran into the Kosiks, local beekeepers we have chatted with both at the Égerszög Opera Festival and Tornabarakony Village Day. The programme included:

- Esterházy Pál : Ave maris stella
- Bach : Praeludium és Choral
- Palestrina : Kyrie
- Morley, Praetorius és Gastoldi madrigáljai
- Mozart : Trio
- A. Krieger : Andante
- Bartók Béla : Két magyar népdal, Medvetánc, Kanásztánc
- Morricone : Praeludium
- George L. Cobb : Tarantella


Lastly, we planted out salad, beet, garden rocket and cabbage seeds for one last sprint before winter. We processed zucchini relish and sauerkraut, and made white gazpacho and a cooling cucumber drink. The tomatoes have finally begun ripening - we are just hoping there is enough time. The sunflowers are close to 4 meters tall and have finally flowered.