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Feb 13, 2019

André Rieu Completely On A Healthy Tour

André Rieu  Completely On A Healthy Tour

This year he will turn 70, and if it depends on André Rieu, he will add another 50 to that. Tonight the violinist will play his favorite piece in the Johan Cruijff (Dutch soccer star) Arena in Amsterdam. The "Second Waltz" will be played prior to the championship match between AJAX and REAL MADRID.

The Limburger, Feb. 13th - When two years ago he saw Andrea Maier on the TV program  "Summer guests,"  André Rieu sent the professor in gerontology at the university of Amsterdam and the university of Melbourne an e-mail. If she, when he was on tour with his Johann Strauss orchestra in Australia, would like to participate in sport exercises led by his personal trainer, who usually also accompanies the violinist during his foreign concert tours - "she did and now she is hooked. I receive messages from her husband that she is so healthily busy........."

Andrea Maier, Rieu explains, studies the process of aging and is of the opinion that the process of aging is a disease which can be cured. "A rather bold statement. There are people in 'her circle' who even believe that the first person turning 1000 years old is already walking around on earth.'' Laughingly: "That age for me for the time being seems to be too ambitious, but I'll strive for it more than ever to stay in good health and to experience my old age. But then you have to be careful with your body."

Soft Autumn
He will turn 70 this year, for many an age to surrender to the soft autumn of existence. Not André Rieu. The violinist/conductor is currently touring Germany, after which a series of European countries follows: Portugal, Romania, Czech Republic, Croatia, Slovenia, Austria, Switzerland, Poland, Bulgaria, Denmark and Macedonia. Tonight he'll be listening and playing in the Arena the famous "Second Waltz" for the Champions League game between Ajax and Real Madrid. Just like he did 25 years ago in the Olympic Stadium during intermission of the match between Ajax and Bayern Munich. His beloved Vrijthof in Maastricht is traditional in July with the decor of his Dutch summer concerts. Twelve performances with more than 12,000 attendees each. "Just as exuberant as I did last year... We drag ourselves from one jet lag to another. September will be the United States, October Argentina, November Australia. And this year Chile and Colombia are still on the program. But we always say: "We now really have to take things a little easier." And smiling he says: "But we've been saying that for a long time. "It is almost like  the life of a top athlete and that, according to Rieu, requires one to be in excellent condition. In 2010 he suffered a viral infection on his equilibrium organs - his overtired body stood in the way of a quick recovery. "  I took the warning to heart. I thought: it all marches Well, but after your 60th you have to be careful. Now I play sports three times a week - strength training, squatting, bench press, leg press, dead lift, the entire regiment - led by a personal trainer. He really tortures us, since my son Pierre is also part of the party. That makes it one much nicer."

Healthy Taboos
In addition, André Rieu has stopped drinking. "From one day to the next day, it is just like smoking. I smoked until I was 24, three packs a day. Then we wanted children and I read that nicotine affects your sperm. I stopped halfway through a cigarette. Got rid of it. Every day I drank two glasses of wine. Poison, even if  you do it in moderation. Because you are doing it daily. I will tell you: it will become just as taboo as smoking. I now only drink water. Or alcohol-free beer. Tastes pretty good. "Also the diet - or better said: Sensible food - has in "House the Turrets", the little castle of André Rieu at the foot of the Sint-Pietersberg in Maastricht, made its entry. The violinist himself uses the ladle with great regularity . In a brand new kitchen, which he say laughingly "has the same dimensions as the Schönbrunn Palace." "What do I prepare? Just say it and I'll make it for you. And for Marjorie and myself, for the children and grandchildren, for friends. I am crazy about schnitzel, puff pastry filled with meat or fish with a sauce. When I prepare braised veal, I immediately make twenty of them. I freeze them. It is in my profession and tempting to go home and pick up something, but that we do not do that anymore."

Thank You to John for the article and the translation

Jan 24, 2019

Tickets For André Rieu's 100th Concert

Tickets For André Rieu's 100th Concert 
On The Vrijthof To Go On Sale

A new milestone in a successful career

Thursday, January 24, 2019, Chapeau Magazine

This summer, André Rieu will conduct  his 100th concert on the Vrijthof in Maastricht. The ticket sale for this event starts Friday at 10am Central European time. The concert will take place on 18 July. It is the 12th concert of this summer which will be performed on  the Vrijthof. His first concert on the Vrijthof was in 2005. Due to the enormous demand from home and abroad, more than 80,000 tickets have already been sold in total for this coming summer.

André ushered in 2019 with his traditional New Year's concerts in Amsterdam and Antwerp for more than 20,000 visitors. His performance in Sydney, shown worldwide in cinemas, was also a great success. André is currently touring Germany and will perform later this year in Portugal, Romania, Austria and Eastern and Northern Europe.

On 7 December 2018 his latest album "Romantic Moments II" was released. With more than 700,000 tickets sold on five continents, André celebrated the most successful year in his career so far in 2018.

The sales of tickets starts tomorrow, 25 Jan 2019

Thank You to Ineke for the article and John's Translation

Jan 19, 2019

André Rieu I Still Have Two Dreams in Life

I Still Have Two Dreams in Life

By: Katharina Schnurr
Photos by: Marcel van Horn and  F. Abraham

We rarely see the star violinist so personally. Instead of wearing a tuxedo and a violin, André Rieu shows up to  SUPERillu casually dressed, while revealing some of the details of his (musician) life.

His beloved castle in Maastricht (the Netherlands) has barely seen André Rieu, 69, in the last year. With his "Johann Strauss Orchestra", the star violinist has been more successful than ever before, touring all five continents. In SUPERillu, the Dutchman (with his current album: "Romantic Moments II") gives an insight into his life and offers pictures of a special journey.

Mr. Rieu, you are at home all over the world and you have recently performed in Israel!
The audience welcomed us so warmly, it was great. And truly, Arabs really danced waltzes with Israelis. One evening I invited my entire orchestra to Jaffa for dinner. They have wonderful fish dishes there! The Israelis really serve you like royalty, the food was so delicious. And our hotel in Tel Aviv was right on the Mediterranean. Many of my musicians were in swimming trunks or bikinis during the day, but in the evening, of course, in evening dress or tails.

For many of your musicians, you are more than just a "boss" ... 
Of course I'm the boss, but also a "father" to everyone. A good atmosphere is important for me and also that my orchestra feels good. We travel in the same bus, live in the same hotels, eat the same food. I have three cooks on tour with me, and every year there are Christmas gifts and a Christmas party in my studio for all employees. I enjoy caring for others and am very proud and happy about the loyalty of my orchestra and staff.

Son Pierre was in Israel, wanted to get to know the country of his maternal grandfather. He manages the company of his father.

Are there couples in your company?
Yes, many: 1, 2, 3 ... I believe 13 throughout the company. As to how many children were born from these unions, I do not know, I would have to count them. My drummer Marcel Falize alone has three adult sons who all have become drummers. Sometimes all four of them play in the orchestra, that's great!

Soon you will be turning 70. Others think of retirement. What is going to happen to the orchestra when you say goodbye to the stage?
Fortunately, 2018 was one of the most successful years ever for us, so I'm a long way from saying goodbye to the stage. But I have such excellent musicians that some would probably start their own ensembles or transfer to another orchestra. Many of my musicians have been with me for over twenty years, we are a big family.

You have 100 employees. Doesn't that at times feel like a burden?
Of course, I feel there is a certain responsibility, but it is not a burden. First and foremost, I am a musician, but also an entrepreneur, who sees more and more in opportunities than in risks. We make our living from the sale of the concert tickets, and I am not subsidized. After all, I have always wanted to travel around the world with my own orchestra. And I sleep very well at night, simply because I know I can count on my people - and they on me.

In a spice shop the musician makes faces smelling the spices

In 2010 you experienced a burnout. What are you doing to stay fit?
I do a lot of sports, proper weight training, eat healthy - right now I'm putting together a herb garden at home - sleep a lot and maintain a happy marriage. Besides that, I'm never bored.

With the herb garden you have fulfilled one dream. Are there any more?
Yes, I still have two dreams: one to play on the moon and two to play with Bruce Springsteen. I think those are super.

You always look happy. About what do you laugh?
My wife Marjorie and I laugh a lot together, we have the same sense of humor. It might be a program on TV, a sweet video of my grandchildren, a message we receive ... it could be anything!

On what do you notice you are getting older?
Actually, on positive things. I am more at peace. I am still impatient, but not like I used to be. Marjorie always said, "You are like a team of horses. You are either running or are asleep!"

Do you already have plans for your birthday?
Oh, that's only just in October. No, I do not make plans that far in advance. But we Dutch can celebrate rather very well. So it will be a nice break. On my wife's, my sons' and my own birthdays, I am always home, we do not tour then.

Thanks to Ineke for the article and John's translation

Jan 15, 2019

Sam's Special Experience With André

Sam's Special Experience With André Rieu

Written by Sam's Grandmother Sally: "I felt I had to tell everyone what happened to Sam, my autistic grandson, at André's Nottingham concert on the 15th of December". 

Samuel loves André and also Tanya. His teacher Wendy at his special school arranged for him to travel to the Nottingham venue on the afternoon of the concert.

André came down from the stage, in the middle of the sound check, and spent some time talking to him, then Tanya also came to talk to him. And when some of the orchestra went off for their meal, Samuel was invited to go up onto the stage, where he played his violin and jumped around with delight, whereupon those remaining orchestra members joined in and played for him.You cannot imagine the pleasure Samuel got from this.

Finally André returned to the stage to say goodbye to him, gave him a hug, and signed his violin for him. What a very kind and thoughtful man he is, to do all that for a disabled boy. Of course, his grandmother (me!) who introduced Samuel to Andre's music, was green with envy, but so thrilled for Sam.

Sally Mason

Jan 12, 2019

May You Have The Bestest Day Ever BJ!!!

Nov 28, 2018

André Rieu's Most Important Lesson

Rieu's Most Important Lesson

After the public voting round there are still ten candidates in the race for the title of "Entrepreneur of the Year", an initiative of De Limburger newspaper.  In the coming weeks all the finalists will be introduced. Who they are, and what their motives are. 

But Today We Introduce André Rieu

Maastricht, by Will Gerritsen - The  "André Rieu Productions "Factory" is running at full speed. With a tour group of one hundred and ten people, which he calls "one big family", he and his orchestra are performing this Saturday (24 Nov)  in the Australian city of Perth, and in two weeks in Ireland and the United Kingdom. In January they will be in Amsterdam and Antwerp, while on the 11th and 13th of January their subsidiary "Piece of Magic Entertainment" will be streaming his New Year's concert in Sidney to cinemas internationally. 

In between all activities a new CD "Romantic Moments II" will be launched. Who would have thought that of the violinist, who in the early days would perform with his Maastricht Salon Orchestra in amongst others, old people's homes and rehabilitation centers.? Despite his highly praised entrepreneurship, André Rieu has not followed any training in this direction. How did he manage to accomplish that? "I think two things have been very important: first of all, from the very beginning  I have done everything together with my wife Marjorie and secondly, I received a few good lessons from my father-in-law, of which the main one was: persevere!" His father-in-law was a Jewish businessman in Berlin in the early thirties and had experienced the crisis. Rieu: "Then came the escape to Maastricht, the war, the hiding time, loss of family, friends and practically all of his belongings. Time and time again he had to start from scratch.  Not only did Marjorie inherent this perseverance from him. Even I myself heard from him several times when I wanted to quit because everything was going wrong:" Keep going!" 

When Rieu finally  started performing, everything fell into place. "From the first concert on we were successful. There were of course setbacks, but the concerts were always fun and they gave me the courage to continue on. Success and adversity formed  him as an entrepreneur: "It was and primarily still is 'learning by doing. If you are fooled once, you know that next time you better be looking out, make better agreements and make better business decisions". "Rieu pulled classical music out of its serious and snobbish bubble. That together with the rediscovery of the waltz are his biggest innovations.

"In the first place
I will not for a long time to come
consider to or probably
never retire at all".

The story that the carnival concerts of the Limburg Symphony Orchestra under the conduction of his father inspired him, he says to: "Well, as a child, I noticed that as my father conducted a whole evening of symphonies and other "serious music", then as an encore conducted a Strauss waltz, the atmosphere in the theater changed entirely. The audience had a smile on their face, swayed with the music or tapped with a foot to the beat". 

An expansion of the "Rieu company" is the business start up of "André Rieu Productions Piece of Magic Entertainment" in 2017. Main activity: streaming live concerts to cinemas.

Speculation is that this will be the core business, if and whenever Rieu (69) decides to retire: "In the first place I am not going to nor will I  probably ever retire at all. I find it too fun to be together to make music with my orchestra.
My son Pierre has indeed established "Piece of Magic" . It appears to be a very successful formula. Worldwide a quarter of a million people view our concerts in cinemas." Which entrepreneurs form an inspiration source for Rieu? "I am not so involved in doing business that I look at examples which I like to follow. Actually, I just do something, haha! No that's not true. I know exactly what I want, but that comes from within me."

Why Should André Rieu Win?

Ask André Rieu himself:  "Why does he thinks he is eligible for the title of "Entrepreneur of the year?" Short answer: "I have no idea!" Outsiders however boast about his courage and his will to be create great dreams, like the glorious decor of the Schönbrunn Castle in Vienna, a 150 meters long replica which he had built. "I indeed have always been a dreamer, from child hood on. For example, I would watch at construction sites how Construction workers built a house, how a hole was dug, how the foundations were poured, the masonry walls were built and how the pipes were laid. I found everything interesting, learned from it and dreamed of it that I would later also be able to do that. 

In the meantime I just forgot to go to school, haha!" "But who knows, maybe I have learned more from looking than from the school itself. In this manner I looked the same way as a child to violinist Herman Krebbers. I had  a huge admiration for him and thought: "I want to be able to do that later too!"

Thank you to John for this article and it's Translation!

Oct 9, 2018

André Rieu Announces 15th Edition of His Maastricht Concerts

André Rieu Announces The 15th Edition of His Maastricht Concerts

Waltzing Along With Rieu On The Vrijthof During The Jubilee Edition

By: Fons Winteraeken, TV-Valkenburg - In 2019, André Rieu will be performing his traditional summer evening concerts in Maastricht for the fifteenth year in a row. Tens of thousands of visitors can enjoy the maestro and his orchestra on the Vrijthof on 5, 6 and 7 July. Official ticket sales for the special jubilee edition will start on Friday 12 October at 10.00 Central European Time

In recent years, André Rieu has performed 88 concerts in Maastricht for about 900,000 visitors from more than 100 countries. Rieu about his concerts in Maastricht: "For 14 years I with the orchestra, have been walking from the steps of the theater along the terraces at the start of the concerts. That remains such a special feeling. Every time again. You only experience that in your hometown. If it is up to the violinist, he would like to do that for at least another 25 years."

This year the Maastricht stand-alone violinist performed no less than thirteen concerts on the Vrijthof. That was a record. Whether he will stay with three performances next year is not clear.

Thank You To John For The Translation

Sep 10, 2018

Rieu's Concert Series Very Successful

Rieu's Concert Series Very Successful 
Good for 13.3 million Dollars 

By: Rosalia September1,2018 André Rieu is doing very well. The violinist is in second place on the list of artists who are most successful with their tours

According to the Billboard Boxscore list, only Ed Sheeran is more successful worldwide. 

$51.1 million: According to Billboard Boxscore
( this year, and thanks to the thirteen concerts on the Vrijthof in Maastricht, Rieu generated a turnover of 13.3 million dollars (more than 11 million Euros). Since the start of the concerts on the Vrijthof in 2009, the violinist may have raised 54.1 million dollars (more than 46 million Euros) in ticket sales for his performances. According to Billboard Boxscore, these totaled to about 76 shows in Maastricht. In total, the Rieu's touring may have raised some 550.1 million dollars (more than 474 million Euros).

Thank You To John For The Translation

Jun 22, 2018

Tickets and Dinner For The Victims of Rieu Concerts

Tickets and Dinner For The Victims of The Rieu Concerts

Maastricht by Ivo Kok - During the thirteen concerts given by violinist André Rieu in Maastricht next month, space has been cleared up at the Theater at the Vrijthof for the seven hundred guests who were duped by the bankruptcy of the restaurant Scharrels en Scharen.

The domestic and international fans of the Maastricht Orchestra leader, some time ago bought an arrangement of 85.00 Euros each at the chicken and lobster restaurant, including dinner. But after Scharrels and Scharen went bankrupt after barely a year, money, dinner and tickets seemed to have disappeared like snow in the sun. Pierre Rieu, André's son and head of the production company, promised to do everything possible to compensate the victims, which has now been achieved.

The tickets are made available by Rieu, while after consultation with the entrepreneurs of the Vrijthof it was finally decided to add additional spaces to the Theater on the Vrijthof. Dinners will be served there without any additional costs to the victims. Rieu has also taken in consideration that many foreign fans have already booked travel and hotel arrangements for the performances. They can go to the theater on the day they had originally planned their reservations.

It is the second time that André Rieu's productions company came to the rescue after a bankruptcy, because the same happened in 2005 with hotel-restaurant Anna on the Vrijthof. Then too, ten thousand Euros were invested to provide the affected a nice evening. This will be the last time though, emphasized Pierre Rieu. "Undoubtedly at a certain time a business will go bankrupt on the Vrijthof. And for that there needs to be an insurance which will take care of that. A kind of safety-net, so to speak, so that we do not have to arrange everything at the very last moment. We are in discussions with this with the Vrijthof entrepreneurs at the Vrijthof, and they are very sympathetic to these discussions.

Thanks to John for this Article and it's Translation. It will be his last Translation for us until he comes back in August from Maastricht and his vacation  .. Have a Good One John - you've earned it!! 

Jun 17, 2018

"King of the Waltz' Prepares For Marathon Concerts at The Vrijthof"

"King of the Waltz' Prepares For Marathon Concerts at The Vrijthof"
André Rieu: "Without a family, I'd be nowhere"

By HARRIE NIJEN TWILHAAR, de Telegraaf: ANDRÉ RIEU (68), the unsurpassed 'King of the Waltz', is on the eve of another series of marathon concerts at his trusted and beloved Vrijthof in Maastricht. The maestro does not want to speak about exhaustion, although it will be a big task. "I really do need the support of my sons and my wife MARJORIE for this period.''

It is hard to understand that ANDRÉ RIEU (68) will be giving thirteen concerts in two and a half weeks - starting July 4th - at his trusted Vrijthof in Maastricht. Last year there were nine. The violinist certainly does not want to speak of self induced punishment: "This is the best thing there is."

Are you totally ready for this?
"As far as I am concerned. yes, I am fit enough to tackle this long concert series. It is not an attack on my mind and body. Thirteen concerts at the Vrijthof, it is not an unlucky number for me. We can handle it."
The world famous violinist has sold more than forty million albums over the past decades, and remains as hot as ever. In fact, his fan group seems to only increase.

The flamboyant maestro and his Johann Strauss Orchestra have admittedly conquered the whole world, but his performance is nowhere near as beautiful as in his Maastricht. "I love my city and the people at the Vrijthof immensely."

Does such a series of concerts like this not demand a lot from your body?
"Of course it takes a lot of energy, but at the same time all those happy people and all those smiling faces give me back so much energy. I am now training hard to maintain my fitness level, I rest enough and make sure I can perform these "home games". Don't forget that we give concerts throughout the year - worldwide. On an average of one hundred to one hundred and twenty per year. (Laughing) The advantage of the Maastricht concerts is that I can go there on my bike."

The tickets flew again like hot cakes over the counter. What makes your style so special?
"Our music apparently ensures "cuddle hormones" are created. That's what people love, of course I do too. You see people beaming in the square, kissing, it does not end. When at the end of last year the first concert weekend went on sale, those tickets were sold out in no time. The same happened again for the second concert weekend, which shortly thereafter was announced online. There was so much of a demand for tickets that we ended up with these thirteen concerts. And the people who cannot come here can see the concerts live in the cinema."

That 'waltzing' in cinemas also seems to be extremely popular?
"Right. The concerts are broadcast every year in about 2000 cinemas around the world. It was my son PIERRE's idea. I did not at first believe that it would turn out to be such a huge success where people are dancing in the cinema! Isn't that fantastic? They have the feeling to be there live. ROBERT TEN BRINK is the moderator for the concerts on the white screen. We have again put together a nice program. I always find it so delightful to see people love each other so much during our concerts! Every year we have a new program and we try to keep our mystery guest a mystery for as long as possible and we rehearse very hard for a few weeks to give a great concert. Last year we managed to snare Hollywood star DAVID HASSELHOFF (65) and his Knight Rider car. That was an unbelievable huge success."

In 2010 you were ill for a long time. How will you prevent not to become overtired again?
"Just like a sportsman at the highest level, I prepare myself for those marathon performances. I have to be there on Wednesday, July 4th when the premiere takes place and I cannot afford to let my mind or body falter. I had a viral infection on my equilibrium eight years ago. The situation worsened at the time because I became tired due to too many performances."

Have you learned to be more in tune with your body?
"Yes, definitely. That infection and the grueling period afterwards did not deter me. I think more about my health than ever before. The problems with my equilibrium have fortunately never returned. I do everything to stay fit. That way I make sure everything is in balance and harmony, just like the music we play. That way you can endure. I live healthy, sport under professional supervision with my personal trainer and make sure that I rest sufficiently. On concert days I do nothing else than prepare for the concert. No appointments and no interviews.

Not only has your popularity grown, but that of your orchestra as well.
Last year we celebrated our thirty-year jubilee. In 1987 we started with twelve people on the stage, now there are more than sixty men and women who make music with me. We play with all of our heart and enthusiasm which we feel in us. Nothing is fake, everything is real and authentic. We play classical music but bring it in such a way that it appeals to both young and old. Classical is not meant for the elite alone. Take MOZART for example, I'm sure he was a pop star in his time. If he was alive now, many admirers would want to take selfies with him, and girls' rooms would be decorated with his posters!

Fans from all over the world follow you to the Vrijthof. Does that do anything for you?
"I find it inconceivable. Besides, playing in Maastricht is really "coming home", it feels so fantastic! The entire year we travel all over the world, and in the summer "the entire world" comes to Maastricht. I always welcome my audience to "The Center Of The Universe", because at that moment that is what we experience. Last year there were about ninety nationalities at the Vrijthof. Unbelievable, isn't it?"

Do you yourself decide every year what you are going to do on the Vrijthof?"
"I do that together with my wife MARJORIE. We together decide which compositions are suitable. We never have a certain theme in our heads, it evolves automatically due to the composition of the program. Sometimes an orchestra member comes up with a musical proposal, even MARC (my oldest son); he has an enormous collection and knowledge of film music. Marjorie and I regularly make use of that.

Do you still have time for a private life?
Yes, of course I do! I always call my orchestra "my big family", we share everything together "on tour", love and suffering. But there is always enough time left over for a private life which I can spend with my "small family". That is of course my wife, my sons and not to forget my five grandchildren. That is an unprecedented luxury, being a grandfather of five of the sweetest and most beautiful grandchildren in the world!"

Thanks to Ruud for finding this article and to John for Translating it for us!

Jun 13, 2018

André Rieu Ambassador "Youth Fund Culture Limburg"

André Rieu Ambassador
"Youth Fund Culture Limburg"

The Limburger - June 13: André Rieu will accept a position as Ambassador for the "Limburg Youth Culture Fund". With André as Ambassador, the fund expects to improve their visibility and goal (every child counts) of the fund.

 "The Youth Culture Fund" makes it possible for all children to have the chance to develop, even if that is sometimes not financially possible. 

In 2017 the fund supported 817 children in Limburg.

Thanks to John for this and the Translation!

Jun 7, 2018

Together with André Rieu, This Girl From Twente Travels The World

Together with André Rieu, This Girl From Twente Travels The World

ENSCHEDE - With André Rieu's orchestra she travels around the entire world. But on Friday (8 Jun 2018)  Singer Donij van Doorn (32) will be back in the Dutch province of Twente. Eight years ago her father passed away due to cancer. Now there is a benefit concert. "Music comforts, always."
By Herman Haverkate:

Next month she will be back at the Vrijthof in Maastricht again. For thirteen evenings. Rieu fans from all over the world will come to Limburg. In a dress where all the details have been determined by the waltz king himself, Donij van Doorn, will sing in the shadow of the Servaas basilica, the great aria of Violetta from the opera La Traviata by Verdi. "All those thousands of people on that square: that's when you know why you do all of this."

"The music must always go on, but sometimes there are times when it is better to be silent". (Donij van Doorn)

Benefit Concert
Friday at 8 pm, in the intimate atmosphere of the Arkezaal of the Enschede Music Center, not much of the great show will be of notice. Donij van Doorn, permanent soprano soloist in the André Rieu orchestra, will be back in her hometown for just a short time. Together with her brother Brandon on the piano and fellow singer Erik Slik, she will sing at the charity concert of the KWF (fight cancer), organized by her own mother. "My father died of lung cancer in 2010. He was only 53. The hole he left behind is still great, I was unable to sing at his funeral, and we then played a recording of a song I had previously recorded. The music must always go on, but sometimes there are times when it is better to be silent."

Ewige Liebe (Eternal love) The charity concert will somehow be also overshadowed by the thoughts of her father. Especially for him she'll sing the song "Ewige Liebe" (Eternal Love) by Brahms. "Unbelievably beautiful, unconditional love: that is what determined his life. After seven years I now feel that I am able to sing this. Also Erik will make this a personal gesture. He has lost, just like me, his father through cancer."

The concert will be a mix of opera/arias, songs, duets and pieces for piano solos. "We want to show people how beautiful classical music can be. André Rieu is a master in that. He is not only a musician, but also an artist." The fun of our concerts will burst out. And it is only possible if you are really gripped by music."

Dreaming of the stage
She has been dreaming of the stage her entire life. A teacher from group 4 of the Jacobusschool in Enschede noticed her talent. She took piano lessons and became a member of a youth choir, "The many Voices of Lucy Oude Elferink. When she was thirteen she joined the youth opera in a performance of "The magic Flute".
"A fairytale, just like the piece itself. Looking back I think that that was the moment I decided to become a singer." Opera you do that all together, playing piano you do that alone. That is why I stopped."

Click - During the third year at the conservatory in Maastricht she first came into contact with André Rieu. "He urgently needed someone for his choir, they were recording in "De Efteling". Although at that time the conservatory was making it difficult, I said: "Yes." We clicked from the first moment. I never regretted that for a second."

"From the very first moment I clicked with André". (Donij van Doorn)

For two years now she has been a regular singer with his orchestra. She sings the big solo arias and joins him on all the tours. "Mexico, Japan, America: we travel the entire world. Like a a pop artist he travels the entire world. There is no other conductor in classical music who has achieved that."

She does not have problems with her repertoire. "Some people think it is one-sided, I do not agree. André chooses very broadly and deliberately seeks out the limits. I can follow him very easily in that endeavor." Sometimes she is away from home for weeks. Besides performing eighty to one hundred concerts a year with Rieu, she also does her own song recitals and plays roles in operas.

"Sometimes I see nothing else in the world than touring cars, airports and hotel rooms, but the trick is to ensure that the public does not notice that". (Donij van Doorn)

Her most beautiful concert was in Romania. She was there for the first time. Nearly ten thousand people filled the big square in front of the former palace of Ceausescu. "From the stage I saw them sit there. Ordinary people, often very poor, but with a big heart for music. They knew André's music, but had never heard him live before. And when you see them afterwards, radiating with happiness, then you realize that he has really changed something in classical music with his orchestra."

Thank You to John for this Translation.

May 29, 2018

Björn waltzes Around The World With Rieu's Orchestra

Björn waltzes Around The World With Rieu's Orchestra

By Jeroen Janssen: Wednesday morning in Maastricht. You may see a luxurious coach with elegant letters: André Rieu and his Johann Strauss Orchestra on the Kesselskade . The silver coach is the workplace of Bjorn Jorigas, born and raised in Heer and since 2002 driver of André Rieu's company. Even Bjorn did not escape cupid in the big 'family'.

The first years as a driver of a night-liner and in most recent years one of the drivers of André and his Orchestra. The story about a boy from Heer, who once dreamed of a career as a touring-bus driver or bus driver on a city bus, ended up in the world of André Rieu and his Orchestra.

There is no shortage of variety
Bjorn could never have imagined that his passion for the bus driver's profession would lead to one of the most varied and adventurous driver jobs in the world.
You have to admit: which driver spends a large part of the year in the company of the most famous and loved orchestra of all continents? Bjorn remains down-to-earth under that determination, but is indeed happy that he is associated with André Rieu Productions. There is no shortage of variety because last Monday he left for Salzburg where the first in a whole series of European concerts is being given.

Bjorn: "It may sound strange, but we left with empty buses to our destination, the Austrian Salzburg. The orchestra members were flown in later, which is faster and more comfortable. For us as drivers, Salzburg is the first location of this tour, from there we bring the orchestra wherever the concerts will take place. "
Bjorn also tells us that nothing is left to chance within the team. The musicians and crewmembers are not lacking anything. Everything is arranged down into the smallest detail and serves only one goal: the concert must always be perfect and flawless.

One big family
Throughout the years that he has been with the orchestra, Bjorn has never had the feeling of being an outsider. On the contrary, he totally feels as one with the orchestra.

"The company is sometimes jokingly called "one large family,' but that is really true", says the 39-year-old. "The atmosphere within the team is fantastic and that is due in large part to the perfectionism with which we work. Everything has been thought of, concerts and tours are prepared down into the smallest detail. The musicians and crew members are not amiss in anything. The entire preparations and planning serves only one purpose: the concert must be perfect."

Bjorn illustrates his claim with an example. "In preparation for the United States tour last year, I traveled ahead to inspect the buses we would be using there. These tour buses had to precisely meet the wishes of André and the production team, and if necessary had to be adapted. This typifies André's perfection."

Another fact that illustrates the atmosphere within the orchestra is the fact that 13 couples have evolved from within the team, and that is even jokingly talked about as the "Magic of the Waltz." Bjorn also has not escaped cupid and is in a relationship with pianist and violinist Martine Wijers. "You can easily call this a world job and that I can experience this is great.

Thanks to John for the Translation

May 22, 2018

Become successful like André Rieu

This way you may become just as successful as André Rieu

King of the Waltz André Rieu not only draws sold-out venues, but also runs his own billion Euro business. How does he do that? In three lessons you can be just as successful as the world's best-known Maastricht Citizen.

By: Priscilla van Agteren, Algemeen Dagblad

The now 68-year-old Rieu built his business from scratch. He was first taunted for his love for the waltz, now he is a world star with his well-groomed shows. And everything he does - concerts, CDs, DVDs - he does in-house.

Author Johan Nebbeling dedicated a book "Thinking like André Rieu" to the lessons that can be learned from the success of this Maastricht resident. Nebbeling based his book on various biographies, including Rieu's "Maestro without borders" and dozens of articles. "In addition to the excellent violinist and variety entertainer he is, he is above all a great entrepreneur and an eminent businessman. The violinist, showman and entrepreneur André Rieu is someone from whom we can learn a lot.

Three lessons from Rieu

Lesson 1. Dare to dream and dream big
When  at the end of the 1980's Rieu decided to concentrate on the waltz, it was a daring choice. Where classical music was already viewed as a strange duck in the hit parades, this style was seen as hopelessly old-fashioned. But Rieu had a dream, and held on to it at any cost. The definitive breakthrough came in 1994, when his performance of Shostakovich's "Second Waltz" stood in the Mega Top 50 for 30 weeks.

But he was not done yet. Rieu risked a performance in 1995 during the halftime rest period of the Champions League match between Ajax and Bayern Munich, which was a huge gamble. The soccer public was eagerly waiting for an intermezzo of classical music. The fans reacted very enthusiastically and sang loudly along . His fame had started. A year later he founded André Rieu Productions Holding BV, with all shares held by himself and his wife Marjorie Rieu-Kochmann.

In the 30 years that followed, Rieu has played all over the world. But he never stopped dreaming. He would also like to perform a concert on the moon, he once said.

Lesson 2. Make your employees your family and treat them accordingly.
In 2018 André Rieu is the head of a company with approximately one hundred permanent employees, which he treats like family. Some of them really are actually his family members. He governs the company with his wife Marjorie and - increasingly - his son Pierre. Rieu is a family man through and through and watches over the welfare of his immediate family members and likes to spend as much time as possible with them. In addition, he maintains a warm relationship with all his orchestra members and the other employees. When Rieu is on his international tours, they are on the road for weeks . Rieu ensures that his musicians not only 'click' with him, but also with his choice of music. Playing in Rieu's orchestra gives little status for the classical-trained musicians. Orchestra members can count on skepticism from colleagues who see Rieu's choice as a submission to the trade. Nevertheless, Rieu manages to have them bond together by creating a family atmosphere in the work environment. Every rehearsal is started with coffee and cake, they dine together and there is a lot of understanding for personal circumstances. Rieu's employees often stay with him for years, if not decades.

Lesson 3. Prepare yourself well and take calculated risks
According to Rieu's working methods, there is a risk associated with entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship also means taking risks. But taking risks is not the same as getting into something blindly and hoping that it will turn out to be okay. Before Rieu takes on a new venture, he prepares himself well. Preparation for Rieu is more than half the work. The performances are of course detailed into perfection, no matter where Rieu performs.

He also learned from his own mistakes. For tours abroad he does not work - as most artists do - anymore with a tour promoter, but does and controls everything himself. This avoids unpleasant surprises, such as those he experienced during a tour through the United States. Local promoters are tough to negotiate with and that takes up a lot of time. A reason for Rieu to decide that from now on he can arrange those better himself. In those he can afford to take risks. A successful performance abroad does not solely depend on direct income for Rieu. The Australia tour in 2008 was in itself a financial disaster: the construction of just the stage itself was very expensive because it required 500 employees. However, this loss was more than offset by the subsequent sale of DVDs, CDs and merchandising.

Thanks Ineke for this article and John for the translation

May 21, 2018

Andre's View

André Rieu's view

André Rieu's view: 'My orangery is the place where I can completely relax'

Every week "De Volkskrant" (Dutch Newspaper) asks what a nice friend sees when he or she looks out of their window - and what that says about them. Artist Matteo Pericoli, who created the series "Windows on the world" for The New York Times, portrays the view.

By Misha Wessel May 2018

André Rieu's view. Photo Matteo Pericoli

People often ask me which music I like to listen when I am at home. Frankly, I prefer silence. I play between one hundred and one hundred and twenty concerts a year. So when I'm free, I think it's great not to have anyone around me and not be surrounded by music for a while. My orangery is the place where I completely relax. I have sent my gardener out to find out the most beautiful plants and butterflies in the world. The only noise in here comes from the tropical birds and the clatter of the little waterfall at the pond. Delightful!

When I saw that the "Castle De Torentjes" (Little Turrets) was for sale, I did not have to think about it twice. I was - and still secretly am - a big fan of Tin-tin. At one point his good friend Captain Haddock bought the castle "Molensloot." That has always appealed to my imagination. I wanted that too! And my castle has housed so many special residents and stories: the first owner (in 1534, if I am not mistaken) might have been a composer. The famous musketeer d'Artagnan ate his last breakfast here before he died in front of the city walls of Maastricht and I even received piano lessons here as a little boy. So I am incredibly proud that I live here now.

In Maastricht they ring the "Grameer" clock on most of the special Holidays of the church. "Grameer" is Maastrichts for grandmother, derived from the French word "grandmère." The clock hangs in the Basilica of the Saint Servaas, in the center of the city. We live exactly the perfect distance from it to hear its sonorous, almost ominous sound of this clock. And precisely since the clock is almost never rung, I find it so beautiful. I like silence, but that sound really belongs with my view. '

André Rieu (Maastricht, 1949) is a violinist and leader of the Johan Strauss Orchestra. Known as "King of the Waltz", he wants to make classical music accessible to everyone. He has sold more than 40 million CD's and DVD's worldwide and annually attracts hundreds of thousands of fans with his concerts.

Thanks Ineke for the article and John's translation






Pierre and André September 30, 2016 Maastricht












Photo Taken at Mexico City Concert ~ September 2013




"Hello to all my fans on The Harmony Parlor!"

Soundcheck in Maastricht 2013 (RTL Photo)

Maastricht 2012 ~ "André on The Theater Steps" by Bee

Maastricht 2012 ~ "André and Pierre on The Theater Steps" by Bee