Clare Galambos-Winter
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Clare Galambos-Winter

Clare Galambos (1923 – 2014) was a young violin student in Budapest at the Fodor music academy in March 1944. Jailed a few days after the German occupation, she was later transported from the Szombathely ghetto to Auschwitz-Birkenau.  After five weeks she and her aunt were among the thousand Hungarian women selected for slave labour at a munitions factory. They returned to Hungary after the war, and in 1948 they both left Hungary for New Zealand, where Clare joined the then fledgling National Orchestra and played on with the NZSO for 32 years.

From the horrors of Auschwitz to the hard labour in a munitions factory - my music and I survived. My family, however, did not.

We lived in Szombathely, Hungary. My family was well off, music was central to my life and by the age of 16 my talent was well recognised. The arrival of the Nazis changed everything.

Of the 4,800 Jewish residents of Szombathely less than 100 survived the war.

None of my immediate family were left alive and apart from a cousin and an aunt I had no home and no means of support.

Read Clare Galambos-Winter's story

Watch a video interview of Clare Galambos-Winter:


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