Štúrovo, June 9th, 2018 (Saturday), 12:00 – 22:00

At the beginning of the nineteen fifties, the bridge between Štúrovo (Slovakia) and Esztergom (Hungary) was in ruins. It was almost impossible for relatives and friends on each side of the Danube to get in touch or communicate. People would go down to the river, mostly on windless evenings, to talk to each other. The water carried the sound of short messages, often encoded, to the other bank half a kilometre away.

The AquaPhone performance refers to this phenomenon, honouring all the lives whose secrets had at one time been entrusted to the Danube, recalling this testimony of people's yearning to talk together, and of their inventive genius bridging borders and distances under difficult conditions.

Alfred Zimmerlin and Markus Eichenberger took up the idea of Hanneke Frühauf and created a musical improvisation on the text for four persons written by Ilma Rakusa. The text will be read by speakers on both sides of the Danube and crossing it in the original German language and in Slovak and Hungarian translation. It will be accompanied by improvisations on cello and clarinet by the Swiss musicians.

In the supporting programme is the XIIth Bridge Guard Book Festival with participation of publishers from Slovakia, Hungary, and Germany. The event starts the Transart Communication project with an international performance on the Maria Valeria Bridge and in the pedestrian street. In the Bridge Guard residence, the 43rd bridge guard Leah Lovett from London will provide an insight in the works produced in Štúrovo. Tomáš Baka will present his just published book Štúrovo – Párkány. Máté Méri will read his text that won the Creative Writing Workshop in 2017. Mila Haugová will moderate a discussion with Ilma Rakusa. Máté Szabó improvises with electronic music. After the AquaPhone performance a jazz concert with Trio Hodek will conclude the day.

Štúrovo, June 9th, 2018 (Saturday), 12:00 – 22:00

Ilma Rakusa

Writer, translator, literary scholar. Born 1946 in Rimavská Sobota (SK) into a Slovenian-Hungarian family. Since 1951 lives in Zürich (CH). Studied Slavonic studies and Romance philology in Zürich, Paris and Leningrad. Her stories, lyrics and essay have been published in French, Russian, Hungarian, Serbian-Croatian, Swedish and Japanese translations. Ilma Rakusa received numerous awards among them the Swiss Book Award 2009 for her autobiography.

László Márton

Writer, playwright, translator and essayist. Born 1959 in Budapest (HU). Studies German, Hungarian and Sociology at the University Eötvös Lóránd in Budapest. Publishes numerous novels, stories, essays, and translations.

Mila Haugová

Poet and translator. Born in 1942 in Budapest (HU), lives in Bratislava (SK). She was 1986-1996 editor of the literature magazine „Romboid“. Many of her nearly two dozen poetry volumes published in Slovakian language are translated in English, French, German, Russian and Polish.

Transart Communication

Transart Communication is an international contemporary event that celebrates its 30th anniversary. On this occasion a Performance Boat will travel from Budapest to Bratislava and stop also in Szentendre and Štúrovo to show artistic performances, concerts and exhibitions.

Markus Eichenberger

Musician (clarinet, saxophone), music teacher, composer. Born 1957. Since 1977 improvised music with different groups and projects. Since 1982 solo projects. Concerts in Europe, radio and television broadcasts. Lives in Zürich and Menzberg (CH).

Alfred Zimmerlin

Composer, musician (cello) and music critic. Born 1955. Studied music science and music ethnology at the University of Zürich. Teaches improvisation on the Music Academy in Basel. Concerts and radio recordings in Europe and USA. Lives in Uster (CH).

Tomáš Baka

Grew up in Štúrovo. Studied history on the University in Nitra. Interested in history of the 20th century.

Mátyás Méri

Student of the High School in Štúrovo. Winner of the 2017 Creative Writing Workshop.

Máté Szabó

Musician. Born in 1989 in Galanta. Founding member of the Jóvilágvan ensemble.

Trio Hodek

Dávid Hodel (1997, percussions), Aron Hodek (2011, bass guitar), Eugen Vizváry (keyboard)

Organisers: Cultural association Štúrovo and Vicinity
Supporters: Association of the Slovak-Hungarian Friendship Štúrovo
Municipality of Štúrovo
Municipal Cultural Centre Štúrov
Štefan and Viera Frühauf Fund of the Corymbo Foundation, Zürich, Switzerland

Štúrovo, June 9th, 2018 (Saturday), 12:00 – 22:00


12:00 – 12:45

Maria Valeria Bridge

On the 30th anniversary of Transart Communication its Performance Boat stops in Štúrovo: Performance with artist from 24 countries

13:00 – 13:45

Pedestrian zone

14:00 – 17:30

In the street
Pri Colnici

XIIth Bridge Guard Book Festival with the publishers

Albert Marenčin - PT Publishers (Bratislava)

György Orbán - Ráday Könyvesház (Budapest)

Thomas Zehender – Danube books (Ulm, Germany)

14:30 – 15:00

Bridge Guard residence
Pri Colnici 2

Opening of the exhibition with the works of the 43rd bridge guard
Leah Lovett (London, UK)

15:00 – 15:30

Tomáš Baka: Štúrovo – Párkány, Marenčin PT (Bratislava)

Book presentation

History of the present Štúrovo area from the start of its populating

15:30 – 16:00

Inundatio in Infernum – Improvised music with a synthesiser conducted by Máté Szabó

16:00 – 16:15

Mátyás Méri reads his Creative Writing Workshop winning text Three

16:15 – 17:30

Talk with the author of the AquaPhone text Ilma Rakusa

Talk master: Mila Haugová

18:00 – 19:00

Near the Maria Valeria Bridge on both banks of the Danube.

You can enjoy the performance also on the bridge.

In all weather conditions.

“Talk at the Bridge” AquaPhone Performance

  • Text:                  Ilma Rakusa
  • Translation:       Mila Haugová (Slovakian),
    László Márton (Hungarian)
  • Music:               Markus Eichenberger, Clarinet,
    Alfred Zimmerlin, Cello
  • Speaker:            Éva Uzsák,
    Péter Urbán, Zoltán Németh, Karol Frühauf
  • Sound:               Roman Laščiak, Pavol Prockl
  • Production:        György Himmler

19:15 – 20:00

Bridge Guard residence

Delicious food and noble drinks

20:30 – 21:30

Jazz concert of the Hodek Trio from Komárno

Tune up on Friday, June 8th, 2018 (Friday)

15:00 – 17:00

High School Štúrovo

„Creative writing“ workshop for everybody with Mila Haugová
(Slovak und Hungarian)




In the year 2001 the Mária Valéria bridge between Štúrovo (Slovakia) and Esztergom (Hungary) was reopened. During its history, this bridge was destroyed and unusable for a longer time than it was actually connecting the two towns. The bridge’s stubs kept the memory of the second World War alive for 57 years. This was the second destruction of the bridge built in 1895. Already between 1919 and 1926 it was out of service.

The rebuilt bridge deserves to be saved from further destruction by people. To this aim, mental protection is more important than physical protection. As long as the mental connection between people is intact, the bridge is not endangered.