We found Tony Curtis’ relatives in Mátészalka-VIDEO

We found Tony Curtis’ relatives in Mátészalka-VIDEO

We found Tony Curtis’ relatives in Mátészalka-VIDEO

Is it because of love, guilt or just humanity? For more than half a century János Turzai preserves the Jewish cemetery of Mátészalka. As a 90+ year old superintendant he was our guide and navigated our team through the graves of Tony Curtis’ ancestors. Why is the border town called the “cradle of Hollywood”? And will they find a new wonder rabbi in Debrecen? You will find the answer to all this in our latest film.

In the north-eastern town of Debrecen, not only the rich Jewish heritage deserves attention, but the local community is also preparing with very ambitious plans. In our last video, you may have already met Zsolt Heller, a member of the community.

Our new episode features

other prominent figures from the community, giving us a glimpse of what it is like to work for a community where an Israeli rabbi is employed, but they can also count on the city’s hundreds of Israeli students as reinforcements.

Faigen Sámuel rabbit sok egyéb mellett kérdeztük a csodarabbikról és a városban létrehozott új zsidó aktivitásokról, valamint egy új létesítményről is. Utóbbi azért is különleges, mert a koronavírus-járvány miatt a hivatalos megnyitót nem tudták megtartani, de most a napokban egy purimi ünnepséggel hivatalosan is átadják a város lakóinak.

Among other things Rabbi Samuel Faigen was asked about the wonder rabbis in the region and the new Jewish activities created in the city, as well as about a brand new Jewish facility in Debrecen. The latter venue is also special because the official opening could not be held due to the coronavirus epidemic, but now for the recent purimi ceremony it was handed over to the residents of the city.

In the film, we also show how the locals, together with the city leadership, have continuously created and are creating programs and developments that can make Jews more visible and even more attractive in Debrecen.

‘Nem vagyok csodarabbi , próbáltam csodát csinálni csak nem sikerült”

Debrecen és Mátészalka hősei , jelene és jövője egy fénylő sziget a vidéki zsidóság számára. Egyszerre van itt tfilin , Cukor és


As for attraction: an ethnographer dreamed of a bold couple of years ago. Today, Mátészalka uses the saying “the cradle of Hollywood, the city of light” as its official slogan. László Cservenyák’s image-forming idea has recently manifested itself. An entire stretch of street was handed over in the city center, where the lights were once the first in Hungary to come on.

Today, the brilliance continues: Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg county has given the world several moving artists. Not only does Tony Curtis, Hollywood’s “Goulash Hussar,” come from here, but Adolf Zukor, one of the most influential moguls in American filmmaking, also went to school here.

In addition to recalling their international fame and their adherence to the roots of their ancestors, László Cservenyák, the director of the city’s Szatmár Museum, also discusses the peculiarities of Jewry in the region and presents their latest exhibitions. We were also lucky to meet János Turzai, who, well over his 90’s, is passionate about the Jewish cemetery of Mátészalka, which he has been the caretaker for more than 60 years.

During our joint wanderings between the graves of Tony Curtis ’relatives, we were also able to see a little into his soul, from which we felt that a peculiar human story seemed to emerge behind his personal commitment.

And then we did not even mention what Jamie Lee Curtis had promised Mátészalka after she had personally visited the city of his father and his own ancestors a few months ago…