Gábor Turi is retired director of international affairs of the University of Debrecen. He began his professional life as a journalist and editor, took diplomatic assignements as cultural attaché in London, and press attaché in Washington. From 2002 to 2006 he was elected Deputy Mayor of the city of Debrecen in charge of culture and foreign relations. He has been extensively writing on jazz music, having published books and a great number of arcticles in Hungary and abroad. He is a columnist on jazz for the Hungarian periodical Gramofon and the daily Magyar Nemzet. He was elected deputy president of the Hungarian Jazz Federation twice, and for his lifetime achievement was awarded the András Pernye Prize. On a Fulbright grant he spent three months in 2013 at the Institute of Jazz Studies, Rutgers University, Newark, where he conducted research for a book on the contemporary American jazz scene.


Born Nyíregyháza, June 20, 1951.

Wife dr. Magdolna Balkányi, daughters Anna (1979) and Eszter (1983).


School of Journalism, Budapest (1977)

Lajos Kossuth University, Debrecen, MA in History and English (1975)


2008-2013 Director, Center for External Relations, University of Debrecen

2006-2010 Counselor for International Affairs, City Council of Debrecen

2002-2006 Deputy Mayor of Debrecen

1998-2002 Press Attaché, Embassy of Hungary, Washington

1996-1998 Editor, Inform Studio Ltd, Debrecen

1996          Editor-in-chief, Hajdú-bihari Nap, Debrecen

1992-1995 Cultural Attaché, Embassy of Hungary, London

1975-1992 Journalist, editor, Hajdú-bihari Napló, Egyetemi Élet, Magyar Fórum, Úton

Grants, visits

2013 USA, Institute of Jazz Studies, Rutgers University, Newark / Fulbright Commission

1991 USA / National Forum Foundation

1989 Soviet Union / Association of Hungarian Journalists

1989 Sweden / Hungarian Scholarship Council

1987 Poland / Association of Hungarian Musicians

1986 Norway / Hungarian Scholarship Council

1983 Czechoslovakia / Association of Hungarian Musicians

1882 Poland / Association of Hungarian Musicians

Teaching practice

Lectures and seminars on the essence and evolution of jazz, 2007-2015 (University of Debrecen, North American Department)


András Pernye Award for lifetime achievement (Hungarian Jazz Federation, 2013)

US Ambassador’s Award for Cultural Diplomacy (2006)

Medal of Paris (2004)

Honorary Citizen of New Orleans (2004)


Perspectives (Sketches of Hungary) – Debrecen University Press, 2011

Jazz in the Castle (A History of the Gyula Castle Festival) – Gyula, 2011 (editor)

Time for Jazz (A collection of essays, portraits, reviews) – Osiris Budapest, 1999

Life-Tree (The Art of Zoltán Bertha, painter) – Felsőmagyarország, Miskolc, 1998 (editor)

Jazz from Hungary (A Guide) – Interconcert Budapest, 1987

I Say: Jazz (Interviews with Hungarian Musicians) – Editio Musica Budapest, 1983


Hundreds of articles and reviews in Hungarian and foreign papers (Alföld, Élet és Irodalom, Gramofon, Jazz, Kultúra és Közösség, Muzsika, Jazz Forum, Kultur und Kunst, The Washington Times, Film, Színház, Muzsika, Magyar Nemzet, Magyar Hírlap, Új Magyarország, Napi Magyarország, Úton, Hajdú-Bihari Napló)