Thomas Gallia

Thomas Gallia was a close friend to János Sebestyén for more than forty years and was the sound engineer for dozens of his recordings. He was born 27 September 1921 in Budapest and came from a prominent musical family - his grandfather, István Thomán, studied piano under Liszt and was later Bartók's teacher. He was educated in the arts at Pázmány Péter University, studied telecommunication engineering at the State Polytechnic University, and in 1944 earned a piano diploma from the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music. His career began at the Hungarian Radio in 1947 and in 1951 he became chief engineer for MHV, the predecessor of Hungaroton. After the Hungarian Revolution in 1956 he worked in Paris for Pathé Marconi then Disques Charlin. In 1961 he moved to Milan where he was director of the Angelicum Studio. It was during this time that he established Sonart, an independent production company that produced recordings for numerous labels including Vox, Deutsche Harmonia Mundi, STIL, Fonit Cetra and Astrée. Paul Déry was his partner in this operation and they remained based in Milan until 1990 when Gallia relocated to Montpellier and established Sonart France. During the course of his career, Gallia was engineer for thousands of recordings, many with such important artists in the field of early music as Gustav Leonhardt, Ton Koopman, Scott Ross, Blandine Verlet, Luigi Ferdinando Tagliavini, Andreas Staier, Paul Badura-Skoda, Konrad Junghänel, Jordi Savall, René Jacobs and Sigiswald Kuijken. He died 17 August 1997 in Brig, Switzerland.


Gallia at the Angelium Studio in Milan where he was director, early 1960s.

Gallia with Jenő Fehérvári, former director of the Hungaroton record company, mid 1960s.


Gallia at his old flat on Via Trebazio in Milan, 1968.

Gallia with Tibor Kelemen at his new flat on Via Moscova, 1968.


Paul Déry, Gallia's partner at Sonart.

Déry and Gallia, 1971.


Gallia with his daughter Valérie, wife Brigitte, mother Katalin, and Déry, 1971.

Gallia and his daughter Valérie in Switzerland, 1980.


Gallia in Ernen, Switzerland with his daughter Valérie, his aunt Ilona, Hungarian television producer Judit Kóthy, and his mother Katalin, 1993.

Gallia with pianist György Sebők in Ernen, where Sebők gave annual summer master classes and organized a music festival, 1993.

Gallia in Vienna with Dr. Jenő Randé, Hungarian ambassador and author, 1982 (above), and in Budapest, early 1990s (right).


Additional photos and information about Thomas Gallia can be found on the pages About This Site, The Angelicum in Milan, Family, Musicians & Friends and Best of Friends.

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