But that hasn't stopped Csardas from being a kind of Hungarian headquarters in Los Angeles for a number of years, drawing heavily from the expatriate Hungarian community here as well as a few tourists and the curious, adventurous local foodies who want to experience an authentic Hungarian meal.
One weekday evening at Csardas, I was enjoying the du jour potato soup when the owner, Julius Jancso, looked at what I was spooning up with gusto and said, ``That's junk
And in case you're thinking this guy gets special treatment, let me assure you, we were just two people who wandered into Csardas that night.
Owner-host Jancso, a short, gray-haired man who also publishes the West Coast edition of the American-Hungarian Journal, has operated Csardas for a dozen years and evidently owns the property.
With slightly different text, two of its three verses appear on a recent recording by the Tukros Ensemble, currently one of Budapest's leading folk revival groups ("Juhasznota, csardas
es friss" on Tukros Tabor Hungarian Village Music, Folk Europa FECD 005 , CD).
They apparently knew klezmer repertoire, but chose not to play it, because nobody asked to hear it, performing instead melodies from operettas, csardas
, tango, waltzes and other light music.
Included will be: The Case Western Reserve University Dance Team, the Kashtan Ukranian Dancers, the Csardas
Dance Company, the Sokol Greater Cleveland Czech Folk Dancers, Dance Africa Dance, The Repertory Project, the Murphy Irish Dancers, Karamu House, the Shalhevet International Folk Ensemble, The University of Akron, the Hellenic Dancers and the Goral Polish Folk Dancers.
Laura Whalen sparkled as Rosalinde, her Csardas
at Prince Orlotsky's villa a highlight in spite of an ear-jarring glitch in the orchestral accompaniment on one chord.
Christiane Riel's Roselinde was dramatically stylish, her singing at its considerable best in duets and ensembles, somewhat less so in the formidable csardas
, which were uneven in projection.