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Marian Budos : Associate Artist

Of the few languages I can speak, I feel absolutely the most fluent in Music. I cannot remember ever not ’speaking' it and I still feel the child-like excitement of visiting that special place Music takes you to, every time I compose.

Random Audio Sample: Two worlds : Home : song for the loved ones by Marian Budos, from the CD Hemispheres


Photo of Marian Budos

Photo: Ivana Troselj

Marian Budos (b.1968, Slovakia) has had an intriguing career as a composer, classical guitarist, conductor and pedagogue, preceded by an earlier successful international career as a champion 1500m runner for the Czecho-Slovakian national team. In 1991, Budos graduated from Matej Bel University with a Bachelor of Education. The following year, he permanently settled in Australia. In 1995, Budos continued his studies in composition at the Australian National University with Jim Cotter and Larry Sitsky. He studied classical guitar with virtuoso Ján Labant followed by Mark Norton and conducting with Andrew Koll and Roland Peelman.

Budos's compositional style is driven by structure, direction and narrative content. His belief in strong harmonic, melodic and rhythmical development is underscored by an unorthodox use of instrumentation and orchestration, based on a mixture of Western and non-Western musical traditions.

Budos has received a number of awards, the most prestigious being the 1998 SOZA Composer of the Year Award for his work Two Worlds for classical and semi-acoustic guitars televised nationally on STV and later released on a CD of the same title. Compositions from this CD formed core repertoire for the 1997 Slovkoncert tour of Slovakia and consequently tour of Australia in 1999, where Budos performed in a trio with Ivana Troselj and Ján Labant.

Budos has worked as a composer, conductor or performer with numerous individuals, ensembles and orchestras locally and internationally. In 2002, the conductor Oliver von Dohnanyi premiered and recorded his three guitar concertos with soloists Ján Labant, Rémi Boucher and Peter Remeník and the Slovak Sinfonietta, later released on the album Heart on a Sleeve. Music from this album has been used in film and television, and it has also been featured repeatedly on the US-based Classical Guitar Alive! show, which broadcasts weekly to over a million of listeners across hundreds of radio stations in North and South Americas, Europe and Africa.

Budos's arrangements of folk songs were featured in two concerts at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games celebrations in Canberra.

In 2005, Budos co-wrote and conducted music for the popularly received European tour of Seasons of the Soul with Ivana Troselj, which was performed by cellist Monika Leskovar, mezzo-soprano Ivana Troselj and guitarist Ján Labant, together with vocal group Close Harmony Friends and Bohdan Warchal Chamber Orchestra. He has also worked on numerous projects with leading Australian performers, such as the Once Upon a Time concert tour in 2010 with cellist David Pereira, harpist Alice Giles, saxophonist Niels Rosendahl, composer Ivana Troselj, and puppeteers Cathie Roach and Cathy Petocz. Other significant artistic collaborations forged over the last two and a half decades featuring Budos's music include guitarist Tonié Field, VCA Guitar Orchestra, the JGO South German Orchestra, Hamburg Guitar Duo, and flutist Ján Figura, many of which resulted in concert tours, festival performances, recordings and radio broadcast in countries as varied as Cuba, Venezuela, Poland or Thailand.

A number of Budos's latest commissioned works have been premiered internationally in recent months, among these The World Unseen by Satori Quartet in Germany, The Magic Lute by the New Zealand guitarist John Couch in London, and solo guitar piece Cithara Aediculae op. 30 by Ján Labant, for the 30th anniversary of the Cithara Aediculae International Guitar Festival, Slovakia, for which Budos has been writing new music since 1997.

To celebrate 100 years of the Australian National Capital Canberra in 2013, Budos was commissioned to write two new works: Clepsydra (Water Clock), premiered by the visiting Swedish quartet The Peärls Before Swïne Experience with local Griffyn Ensemble at the Belconnen Arts Centre and My Canberra (Symphony No.2) - performed and recorded live at the Llewellyn Hall, School of Music, Australian National University, featuring the Canberra Youth Orchestra.

Earlier in 2013, Home from Two Worlds arranged for Sally Walker (flute) and Phillip Mayers (piano) was released on the album Hemisphere through Chartreuse label.

Budos's orchestral music from the album Heart On A Sleeve has been selected for US music libraries (incl. Perpetual Music Group, HD Music Now) that provide music to feature films, TV, commercials, computer games and apps.

Budos has been actively involved in helping local community music groups. He served as the President of Canberra Youth Music Council from May 2012 to June 2014 in the transitional period of merging with Music for Everyone. For this work, he was awarded an honorary life-time membership of the newly formed government funded organisation Music for Canberra in 2015. Budos is regularly invited to adjudicate music competitions, including the Cooma Music Competition, the Australian National Busking Championship, National Young Virtuoso Competition, etc. He has also sat on a number of audition panels for orchestra players and conductors. Budos is a member of the Canberra Guitar Ensemble and a newly formed guitar quartet with Leslie Spence, Mark Norton and Allan Spencer. He has headed the Music Department at Alfred Deakin High School since 2008, where he has designed and established unique orchestral and music industry curricula.

Budos's newest compositions include Song For Leslie premiered in December 2015 at the Ainslie Arts Centre and Light, music for Step Into The Limelight show premiered at the Australian Institute of Sport Arena in August 2015. Future premieres include Liminal Moments for flute and guitar written for the US guitarist and Classical Guitar Alive! host Tony Morris, and Max and Moritz commissioned by the German Jugend-Zupforchester von Baden-Württemberg.

His compositions Linn Linnaeus and The Magic Lute are featured on John Couch's latest disc Ask Me Tomorrow, released in November 2015. Both of these compositions have been broadcast repeatedly on different ABC Classic FM programmes since December 2015.

Budos is currently working on The Passing of a Black Star (Homage to David Bowie) commissioned by the New Zealand Guitar Quartet, and he has just finished writing a solo guitar piece One Last Time for the Cithara Aediculae festival in October 2016, to be played by Ján Labant.


Marian Budos — current to August 2016

Selected Commissions

  Work Commission Details
My Canberra : Symphony No. 2 (2013) Commissioned to celebrate the Centenary of Canberra
Digital sheet music sample Clepsydra (Water clock) : for flute, bass flute, harp, piano, acoustic bass guitar, violin and violoncello (2013) Commissioned for the Centenary of Canberra celebrations - Water
Digital sheet music sample Cithara Aediculae, op.30 : for classical guitar (2012) Commissioned by the Cithara Aediculae international guitar festival, Nitra, Slovakia
The magic lute : the minstrel's tale (2010) Commissioned by John Couch.
Linn Linnaeus : duet for violin and guitar (2007) Commissioned by Judith Hickel, John Couch.
Digital sheet music sample A little piece of heaven : for retuned guitar (2003) Commissioned by Jan Labant.