János-Gyulai Gaál was born 28.04.1924. in Budapest, Hungary. He was a highly appreciated musician from a very early age on and studied at the music school of Kaposvár, and then he graduated at the Liszt Ferenc Academy both as a violinist and a pianist. The first prize he won was at a violin competition in 1941 – a Hubay Prize. He started his career as the violinist at the National Concert Orchestra, and later worked as the répétiteur at the Hungarian National Opera House, where he often stepped in as a violinist or pianist too. In 1956 was awarded the prize of the Concours de Musique Symphonique Legere in Belgium and became the director of the Hungarian Bartok-Hall. From 1959 he worked at the Hungarian National Radio, for 25 years. He was not only a successful composer but an arranger and conductor too. He won the Erkel-Prize in 1967. Meanwhile working for the Hungarian Radio, he often performed in Leipzig, Dresden and Berlin. Two piano concertos, the Harp Concerto, the Rhapsody for violin with orchestral accompaniment as well as a newer Violin Concerto mark the major line of his compositions which five musicals and a great deal of stage-, film and popular music were added to.
Gyulai-Gaál was asked to be the jury of the first Hungarian talent show, Who Knows What? (Ki Mit Tud?) which he fulfilled throughout the 1960s. One of his songs, Nem leszek a játékszered, performed by Kati Kovács, won the first prize of the Festival of Dance Music (Táncdalfesztivál) in 1966. Between 1980 and 1990 he worked for the Bavarian Broadcasting (Bayerischer Rundfunk) as a contributor. He was arranging and conducting and eventually recording many of his pieces in Lindau.
He was awarded an eMeRTon Honorary Award, a Huszka Jenö Honorary Award, a Fényes Szabolcs-Award, an Artisjus Honorary Award and two of the Crosses of the Order of Merit of the Repubilc of Hungary (1994, 2009 – posthumus).
He was married twice and has one Son. János Gyulai-Gaál passed away, after a short sickness, on the 12th of February 2012.