Ferenc Farkas was one of Hungary's most decisively important 20th-century composers.

He was born on 15 December, 1905 in Budapest. At the Academy of Music Budapest (1922-27) he was a pupil of Leó Weiner and Albert Siklós, then continued his studies in Rome at the Accademia di Santa Cecilia under the supervision of Ottorino Respighi. From 1935 he taught at the Higher Music School in Budapest, then at the Conservatoire in Kolozsvár, and later at the Székesfehérvár Conservatoire (he was also director of the latter two). In 1949 he was appointed teacher of composition at the Academy of Music Budapest, and as head of department he retired from there in 1965. He died in Budapest on 10 October, 2000.

György Ligeti and György Kurtág studied under him, and in the course of his long teaching career he taught several generations of Hungarian composers - his students included Emil Petrovics, Sándor Szokolay, Miklós Kocsár, Zsolt Durkó, Attila Bozay, Zoltán Jeney and László Vidovszky. His oeuvre (more than 700 works) embraces almost every musical genre: he composed operas, ballets, incidental music for the theatre, film music, masses, cantatas, choral works, songs, orchestral works and concertos, chamber music and also solo pieces. His musical profile combined Hungarian folk music, classical traditions, the melodiousness of the Mediterranean, and twelve-tone technique. His technical virtuosity as a composer, his knowledge of style, his fertile inventiveness and his wide-ranging culture won him international recognition. The Hungarian state conferred many honours on him.

Official website of Ferenc Farkas: www.ferencfarkas.org