Éri Péter Kossuth, Liszt Ferenc and Martin György award-winning musician, folk musician, member of the band Muzsikás, died on Sunday at the age of 70, the artist’s daughter and the Óbuda Folk Music School announced on their Facebook page.
Péter Éri was born on November 11th, 1953 in Budapest. He attended the Eötvös Loránd University (ELTE) Anglo-Romanian ethnography major. He came into close contact with folk dance as a child, and later became a founding member of the VDSZ Bartók Béla Dance Ensemble. His teacher was Sándor Tímár, but he also learned a lot from old village dancers. As it can be read on the website of the band Muzsikás, Péter Éri’s foster father was György Martin, a dance and music folklorist, who regularly took him on his collecting trips since he was a small child, where he met the best village masters of folk music and folk dance.
He knew the Kalotaszeg boys’ dance faithfully at the age of ten, became a soloist of the Bartók Béla Folk Dance Group at the age of 14, and learned music in a self-taught way. Since 1975, he has been the bassist of the Sebő band. He was a regular guest musician of Muzsikás until 1978, since then he has been a member of the band, singing and playing the viola, contrala, various flutes and mandolin. He was the sound engineer of Muzsikás, the author of folk music arrangements, the editor and creator of the regular folk music program of Magyar Rádió. As a member of the band Muzsikás, the artist was awarded the Liszt Ferenc Prize in 1995. In 1999, the ensemble also received the Kossuth Award for its steadfast activity and artistic work in the domestic and international promotion of Hungarian traditional folk music.
This year, Péter Éri received the Martin György Award in recognition of his outstanding work in the field of folk art.