István Ella was born in Veresegyház, near Budapest, in 1947. He studied the organ at Prof. Ferenc Gergely and choir conducting at Prof. Zoltán Vásárhelyi at Liszt Ferenc Music Academy. He graduated in 1971, then in Weimar and Leipzig he studied at Prof. Johannes Ernst Köhler (organ and improvisation) and at Prof. Olaf Koch (conducting of orchester). He graduated in Wittenberg where he conducted the Halle Philharmonic Orchestra. He was a prize-winner in the 1971 Prague International Organ Competition. As an organ performer István Ella was awarded outstanding international prizes:

  • 1972: 2nd prize at Leipzig International Bach Competition
  • 1974: 1st prize at Linz International Anton Bruckner Competition
  • 1976: 1st prize at Brugge International Bach Competition (Belgium)
  • 1976-1986: artistic director and soloist of the Corelli Chamber Orchestra, which devoted themselves to the historic performance of the pieces of baroque and classical composers on period instruments.
  • 1979-1984: István Ella is the chief conductor of the Symphonic Orchestra in Székesfehérvár. Since 1984 he has been a member of the jury at several prestigious international organ competitions, (Leipzig, Geneva, Prague, Linz, Lüneburg, Berlin, etc.). He has been a guest professor at master classes in Britain, Germany, Poland and Hungary.
  • 1975-1990: soloist at the Hungarian National Philharmonic Concerts Organization
  • 1989: he established the Budapest Bach Choir, currently still conducted by him. István Ella has made guest appearances throughout Europe as well as Canada, Lebanon, India, the USA and Israel
  • 1999: he was given a Liszt Award

Istvan Ella is married, has two children and lives with his family near Budapest, in a house of his own which accommodates an organ built by the "Eule" Company of Germany.

© 2005 István Ella. All rights reserved.