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►Click Photo For Details on André Rieu's Website

Apr 17, 2014

Enlarged from André's Page
André Rieu and the musicians exuded passion and fervour on stage.

André Rieu in Concert | 4.5/5
André Rieu and his Johannes Strauss Orchestra 
offered a memorable night for all

SINGAPORE April 16, 2014 by Paul Lim:  Imagine beautiful women clad in elaborate pretty dresses swaying and singing, opera singers belting notes out of this world. A backdrop filled with majestic chandeliers and melodious sounds flowing from violins and flutes. And as if that was not enough, hundreds of colourful balloons falling from the sky.

That was how it was at the concert by violinist/conductor Andre Rieu and his Johann Strauss Orchestra. Held at the Singapore Indoor Stadium on Wednesday, the concert was attended by people from different walks of life, all anticipating a memorable night. Honestly, I was dreading a long night. The show was two hours and 45 minutes long, but it turned out to be the exact opposite — I didn’t want it to end.

Rieu’s tour last year made it into Billboard’s Top 25 highest-earning tours list (beating out the likes of Lady Gaga and Bruno Mars, by the way) and no wonder. He charmed the crowd with his charismatic and mischievous personality. When the crowd demanded an encore, Rieu quipped: “You are tired, you need to sleep!”
Accompanied by his orchestra, Rieu played classic songs like The Blue Danube by Johann Strauss II and Memory from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cats on his Stradivarius violin, exuding passion and fervour.

“Apparently, there is a healing power in music; nothing goes as deep into your souls as music. I hope that I can go on making music together with my orchestra the rest of my life,” said Rieu. Too true.

I was thoroughly engaged throughout the performance. My personal favourite was the act by Brazilian soloist Carla Maffioletti, who gave an impressive and hilarious performance, while dressed as a doll. Other opera singers included Mirusia Lowerse and The Platin Tenors. Their voices were all marvellous and gave me goosebumps.

It was no surprise that the performance received a standing ovation. The only problem I had with the concert was the location. The Singapore Indoor Stadium doesn’t quite offer the right ambience — it could have been a lot better if it was held at a different theatre perhaps — and the acoustics and sound quality could have been more solid.

Apart from that, André Rieu and his orchestra were a brilliant sight to behold.

Apr 16, 2014

André Rieu Does Not Need To Be Successful in Russia Yet

André Rieu Does Not Need To Be Successful in Russia Yet
Wednesday April 16, 2014: André Rieu does not need to be on the fast road to success in Russia yet. The violinist, who is still a rather unknown there, is trying to very quietly waltz into this country. "Since I am going to live to 120, there is still plenty of time for that" says the 64 year old Rieu.

The musician has already been performing in countries such as Australia, New Zealand and South America. "A year only has 365 days, and this year I will turn 65. Currently we perform about 120 concert in a year," Rieu explains. "Many more concerts is just not possible. If we do not make it this year, than there is always next year."

Last week Rieu tried to bring China to their feet. Tuesday and Saturday the violinist was on stage in that country and hopes that these shows will be the beginning of a successful career in Asia. "I would enjoy being able to perform here more frequently. When I am here, we try to promote us as much as possible." The king of the waltz also hopes that his concerts will be televised in Asia. "That is the most important that needs to happen."
Very Exciting
The first performances in China were very exciting for Rieu. "You never know how the people are going to react, and whether they like what we do or not," he further explains. According to the violinist, the Chinese fans seemed to enjoy themselves. "I did not know what to expect from the public, especially not in China. But the worries were in vain."

Rieu finds the public's energy very important when he is on stage. "I stand in contrast to a regular director, not with my back to the public, but face them. I see the public the entire evening and they see me," he explains."The interaction with them is crucial in the success of the evening. And every evening it is again exciting when we are able to achieve that."

Although the violinist was excited to perform in China, the preparations for the concerts were nothing more than normal. "Just to ensure that I was one hundred percent in charge."

And the nerves are always present with Rieu. "I always ask myself before I go on stage why I never learned a trade. Still even before the home concerts on the Vrijthof." 


©Translation by John, and thanks to Ineke for sending us this article.

Apr 11, 2014

Mar 19, 2014

For those of you who knew her and loved her, there is no easy way to say that MaryAnn has passed away. She left nothing but happiness and love in our hearts. I will miss her so much as I know many of you will ... See you on the other side MaryAnn ... Love and laughter always. Sue

Mar 11, 2014

Reading From One's Own Bookshelf

Reading From One’s Own Bookshelf

The Limburger-André Rieu: Because I've been married for almost 40 years to a woman who was formerly a teacher of German and Italian at the Porta Mosana College (formerly the Jeanne D’Arc Lyceum) in Maastricht, our bookcase is largely filled with German and Italian literature. Many books about Rome, the city where we prefer to go in our spare time. And then of course, in the broadest sense of the word a lot, of literature on music. And of course many about the Strauss family. An entire shelf filled with Karl May and Tin-tin, the heroes of my youth.

In recent years the children's books department of course has grown, because I love to read to my grandchildren. Historical novels for me are my favorites. By reading about other times you gain a perspective about the times in which we live.

Ken Follett is currently my favorite. Sometimes I read his books one after the other ... Preferably on long trips in the bus or on the plane. But for example, I was also very impressed by "The Cloister and the Hearth" a wonderful novel by Charles Reade, which is about the life of Erasmus’ parents and plays in the 15th century.

I find reading to be a wonderful way of relaxation. But at the same time I am a very curious and interested human being. I always want to know everything precisely, am interested in different time periods, but also the future in all its engineering and aerospace, physics, astronomy, new inventions.

I do not have an e-reader yet. When I am at home I read paper books, and when I am on the road I prefer my I-phone, which is always with me.


Thanks to Ineke for this and John's ©Translation 

Feb 22, 2014

André Rieu: Man Does Not Live by Pizza Alone


Man Does Not Live by Pizza Alone

Interview by Jakob Buhre: For his audiences André Rieu always serves them a light fare, but in private however, he pays attention to a balanced diet. A conversation about boring symphonies, abridged classics, plans for a pizzeria and the question of what exactly he plays on his really expensive violin. It may seem surprising, but with André Rieu’s huge success is not about the qualities of the violin. Although he is seen in almost every photo with the instrument, but during the concert the 64-year-old Dutchman plays mostly in line with his orchestra and very rarely a solo. Rather, they are his entertainer qualities which annually attract hundreds of thousands of listeners to his concerts and the ability to create a symphonic kind of party out of classical music, pop, pop songs and waltzes.

Mr. Rieu, how do you choose from the works which you perform? Rieu: Quite simple: I of course do that with my entire heart. If a piece touches me, then I know that it will also touch my audience – no matter the manner or fashion whatsoever. If I want them to cry because I already cried when I heard that song for the first time, then I arrange it so that it will then also come across to the public that way.

Is there an example from the recent past? Rieu: Yes, I had invited the Jostiband to be on stage with us in August 2013. This is an orchestra for mentally handicapped people. And they played the "Hallelujah" by Leonard Cohen. That immediately touched me, so I made an arrangement right away for them and my soloists. That was really nice. And the audience was, just like me, very pleased with that. When Nelson Mandela died, we were on tour in England, and Kimmy Skota, our South African singer, sang for this occasion, a well-known South African song, while we displayed pictures of Mandela. I want to remain programmatically flexible in order to respond to current events.

Could you tell how a piece must musically be designed, so that it fits in your show? Rieu: That's my intuition. We were once on tour with colleagues from a television production, and after the concert we were in a bar. My pianist had a thick book with all sorts of pieces there which we just played and I said: "If it fits; No - no - no - yes!" And the guy from the production company told me the next day: "Now I understand; you just do it with your intuition."

Does the music have to be "beautiful"? Rieu: That depends. Beautiful is just relative. One finds Mozart beautiful, the other one does not. Still others feel Wagner's "Ring" just as entertaining and beautiful as an operetta by Offenbach. We play music which I find touching and that appeals to me. And that's mostly nice, yes?

And harmoniously? Rieu: For my programs, yes. I think that's my secret. Although: What does secret mean? - It simply functions like that.

There are pieces in your program, in which people are able to move. Rieu: Yes, but not all of them. However, I hope that they move when a waltz is played. That is why he is there.

With you one can frequently clap along? Rieu: That is not the case with all pieces. You know, currently there are more and more people studying me and asking: "What is the secret of André?" They analyze me from right to left and from top to bottom. (Laughs) They come up with all sorts of explanations that I transform classical music into a single sausage. – That my audience goes home incredibly happy, no one speaks of that.

What of personal interest is to me is which kinds of works you play. Rieu: Everything. For a large open-air concert the program is of course different than for a hall where I have the total quiet. But I must say that the people out there are also totally silent when we play a "Do not cry for me Argentina" or "Time to say Goodbye".



Playing an entire symphony would bore me.
We are speaking about an audience which might not trust in the great concert halls, who find Mahler, Bruckner and Bartok too "heavy".
If Chopin had lived today, he would have done exactly the same.
Conflicts and drama, I find all well and good, but not with me on stage.

Could you say, which composers, regardless of gender, who you are particularly fond of? Rieu: I think Andrew Lloyd Webber is a brilliant composer, he has written many wonderful pieces.

Do you actually still attend classical concerts? Rieu: I would like that, but do not know when I actually could do that. We are mostly the entire year on tour.

When was the last time you attended a concert? Rieu: Oh, that was long ago. I think that was in Vienna when the Concert Building Orchestra played a Mahler symphony. I really liked that, a top orchestra, a top Hall. My wife remembers and particularly enjoyed the Viennese State Opera visit. She loves opera.

In your autobiography you write about concert experiences, which are often serious for you. Rieu: Yes, that is true. Recently, one of the directors of the Concert Building was in my concert and spoke with great respect about how I put everything together here, without subsidies. He said that was for the Concert Building not easy either. That's why they now, for example, have made a Road Soap for television. One can show the people the behind the scene activities. For example, one could show a clarinetist and a violinist, who are married, saying goodbye to their children and they are sad because their parents are now going on tour. That puts emotions in it. - That has achieved a lot of good, suddenly people understand: Hey, the orchestra members, they are normal people.

So, to create closeness with the audience is important? Rieu: Yes, that comes from the times of the elitist and strict attitudes. Sure there are people in the classical music field, who say: "No, I do not need that, I know how Mahler sounds, I do not need to know who the violinist is." But with an attitude like that, other people can then gain access to classical music.


How important are the violin solos in your concerts? Rieu: It depends on the program, or if I like it, or if it fits in the program. Every year I make a different program.

Is there still a particular composer with which you would like to perform? Rieu: When I hear something great, then yes, why not. But I do not plan on that. The 2013 ABBA was new; we had never done that before. The occasion was the 40th anniversary of "Waterloo", that is how the idea was born.

If you select a piece, will it then also be arranged? Rieu: Yes.

What exactly are you doing that has changed? Rieu: Oh, then you have to come and experience one of our rehearsals. I have to consider which of our instruments would best be used for which of the original melodies. For example, in "The Winner Takes All" I immediately had a violin solo in my head, for the main melody. In "Chiquitita" the trumpets take over the melody in the second verse. You have to try and feel how you can enhance the mood of the original.

For instance, you change the sound. Rieu: Yes, when I so desire, then I do that. Johann Strauss, for example, did that often. If the space in the hall was too small, he would then leave half of his orchestra at home, and then there was again another arrangement to listen to.

You have for instance arranged Chopin’s Etude Opus 10 No. 3. Would you prefer to listen to the original or your version? Rieu: I do have a weakness for strings, so the orchestrated version of mine is better than the original piano etude.

What do you add to the original? Rieu: That, what I feel. Then I think very often: If Chopin had lived today, he would have done exactly the same.

Does that also apply to the Shostakovich waltz, which you have supplemented with a choir? Rieu: In the past there was not a choir in my arrangement. Now I tour with a choir, and they sing along. It has no intellectual ulterior motives; I have to disappoint you with that.

What would happen if you would ever performed an entire Beethoven symphony? Rieu: I would never do that. Because, I would feel too restricted. I know the entire classical music and I have lived in it, my father was a conductor. I know it all and I would never do that. Maybe you can compare that with an actor who wants to play "Hamlet". But there are also many others who instead go to LA, make famous movies and by that make them feel so much better.

And you will not play "Hamlet" in a theater but rather in a big Hollywood movie? Rieu: I think so, yes. I have a good relationship with Anthony Hopkins, and he says that too. When the intellectual critics ask him: "Why do you play in such a movie, while you can perform Shakespeare in London in the theater?" – He then answers: "I do it for the money" (laughs), and then they all change their tune. No, I would not say it so blatantly "just for the money" - but a Beethoven symphony, that would make me feel too restricted.

Why "restricted?" Isn’t that beautiful music? Rieu: No, not an entire symphony that would bore me. I would take the most beautiful parts from there if I would do that. I would take a part of the symphony, shorten it and then make a hit out of it. Besides, there are enough classical orchestras in the world who play that completely. Our success is that we are totally very different. Thus we appeal to an audience which might not dare to enter the great concert halls. Mahler, Bruckner, Bartok are all "too heavy". With us they feel at home. There are people who have not danced in years. With us they stand up and do that, that's fantastic.

Do you then play Mozart's "Eine Kleine Nachtmusik" in its entirety? Rieu: No, only the most beautiful parts. Our evenings are not concert evenings in the "classical" sense. There are always potpourris.

In classical music there is much drama and conflict. Do you prefer the joyful side of the Classics? Rieu: Yes. Conflicts and drama, that is all well and good, but not for me while on stage. I have had enough conflict and drama in my life; I like the sunny side of life. One can easily compose an evening with drama and everything else - but it's much harder to make the people laugh. I like that much better. Besides: In every German or Dutch small town there is a symphony orchestra playing all these symphonies. I know them all, every one - but for me that is too boring.

With that you would probably not even fill the large Vrijthof Square in your home town of Maastricht, where thousands of people come every year to your concerts. Rieu: No, of course not. They would all fall asleep and say: "But I did not come from England for this."

Have you ever fallen asleep in concert? Rieu: In the past, as a child, yes.

At your father’s concerts? Rieu: Yes, I was always at all his concerts.

What did you like back then? Rieu: When I was 14, Baroque was everything for me and I wanted to be a Baroque musician. Then I got older, listened again to more romance and later through my wife Marjorie I learned to totally appreciate operettas and lighter music. Her father had a huge record collection. That shaped me into what I am now.

Are you more a conductor or a soloist? Rieu: Phew, in the sense I am neither a pure conductor, soloist, entertainer nor a businessman. I am ultimately a combination of them all - and that's why I am successful, I think. I studied the violin, not conducting in the classical manner or studies in business. But I can conduct, and especially above all make music.

What exactly do you play in your concerts, the first violin parts? Rieu: I play whatever comes to mind.

You are seen In many photos with a violin ... Rieu: That is logical, that is my image. I am also known as a violinist.

And you own a very valuable instrument. Rieu: I own three violins including a Stradivarius from 1732. To own this violin is for me personally great pleasure and fun.

How many hours you play per day? Rieu: When I give interviews, less. And when I 'm on vacation, I am happy to retire with my violin and practice. You have to practice. Use it or lose it. A couple of hours a day is fine.

What do you do to fight routine? Rieu: That does not happen to me. It's always fun, I'm always nervous, because my audience for me is always an unknown part. I know my job, but I do not know how the audience will react. And when evening was bad, the audience is not coming back. But it must, however, otherwise no one will pay me, I have to earn everything myself. Anyway, I'm the only one in the world who does that. All other orchestras are subsidized. I think that's ok, but I rather do it myself.

And you are still really excited? Rieu: Yes. Otherwise it would not work. You cannot go on stage being bored100 to 120 times per year. The people would notice that immediately.

What is typical Dutch on you? Rieu: I believe nothing. I do not feel like a Dutchman, but more like a citizen of the world. The only thing that maybe Dutch in me is that I am "down to earth". We are quite happy being Dutch and we say: "Just be normal, and you'll be quite crazy already."

Are you actually a good waltz dancer? Rieu: No, I’d rather play waltzes. On stage, I do not dance because there I can stand back and watch the others, which is much nicer.

In your autobiography it states that you almost opened up a pizza restaurant. Rieu: We actually wanted to open up a pizzeria, but that still remains just an idea. Back then we had already made a menu card and the most expensive pizza was "Pizza Paganini". The plan was then for me to play the violin while this pizza was being served. And for that reason, I again began to practice - and then I thought: "No, I will just omit the Pizzeria."

When you are on tour, do you have two cooks with you? Rieu: Yes, many times even three. This is important for health.

Is pizza also being served? Rieu: No. Pizza is unhealthy. Pizza is just flour. Pizza was actually a poor person’s meal, formerly in Italy.

But when you ask children ... Rieu: You should not ask children what is healthy! Otherwise, they only eat what is tasty and pizza. One cannot live by pizza alone. My secret recipe for a healthy diet: Twice a week white meat, two times a week white fish, once a week red meat, once a week oily/fatty fish - and once a week you may go to McDonald's if you so desire. If you follow that, you will live a healthy life.
Thank You to Ineke and Elke for this and John for ©Translating it. 

Feb 21, 2014

André Rieu Sold Out Award

Kempten - As part of his Germany tour and on the 15th of February,  André Rieu made ​​a stop in the bigBOX Allgäu venue. Together with his Johann Strauss Orchestra he brought 3500 visitors to Kempten and was pleased to receive the "Sold Out Award" from the hall.

"The waltz is a very important part of my life," André Rieu once said.. "For me it is the way to have a positive outlook on life and to bring my sense of humor to the world," and during his actual concert travels he does performs a waltz repertoire. In addition to the beloved Strauss waltzes and evergreens such as "The Beautiful Blue Danube" or "Dark Eyes", there were also parts in where the soloists performing that evening were able to demonstrate their skills. 

The audience in Kempten thanked the native Dutchman with a standing ovation, while the bigBOX Allgäu team presented André Rieu with the award in the form of an Allgäuer Cowbell.
(The award is given on a regular basis as thanks to artists for the sell-out of the hall). 

Thanks to Ineke for sending this and John for Translating it

Feb 20, 2014

Mirusia posted this on her Facebook today: 
"Here is Carla Maffioletti and I in action tonight during our Olympic event of Curling! Going for gold!!!" 

Feb 14, 2014

Rieu Announces Fundraiser For Flood Victims in England

André Rieu Announces Fundraiser For Flood Victims in England 

MAASTRICHT - By Nick Rompelberg and Xavier Comuth, Maastricht Dichtbij - World famous Maastricht violinist André Rieu  is seriously considering a benefit concert to bring aid to the thousands of Englishmen who in recent days have been affected by flooding due to the continuing bad weather. The images of extreme flooding make the Maastricht world star reflect back to the massive flooding in Limburg in 1995, Rieu writes on his official Face book page . At that time he also gave a benefit concert . It was during the time when the Maastricht citizen broke through with his big hit "The Second Waltz."

Rieu, who is now on tour in Germany, is in England just as immensely popular as he is in many other places in the world. In December, he performed three concerts in the famous Wembley Stadium in London. "February 23rd would be a feasible date to move Rieu's decor into Wembley again" André's son Pierre told the Telegraph TV and Dichtbij.nl. However, they are still looking for a relief agency that will support the concert, and a broadcast company which will want to broadcast the special.

André's message on Facebook earned him 19,420 likes so far.

Meanwhile, many British people are holding their breath in anticipation of the new storm which is due to come to their country. Meteorologists have again announced a severe storm and heavy rain for tonight and tomorrow morning. In the 17 areas in the west and southwest, where again a flood warning has been given, problems are likely to be even bigger, reports the BBC. 

After Wednesday's storm more than 26,000 households were still without power Thursday evening. Employees of the electric companies have been working throughout the night to alleviate as many people's problems as possible. ►Click Here For Video in Dutch

Thanks to Ineke for sending the article and John for Translating it.
Just On Maastricht TV in Their News Section 

Pierre announced: André Rieu wants to give a benefit concert for the victims of the Flood in England/Wales. When he saw the images he immediately thought back to the flooding of Limburg in 1995 when he joined a fundraising drive on Dutch TV. Andre reserved 22 and 23 February in his agenda and checked that the Wembley Arena in London is available. He is thinking of a big fundraising drive, supported by BBC, ITV, with more artists added. André launched the suggestion and hopes that other organizations help to realize this action.

Wow, British fans, call the BBC, write to newspapers, to realize such a performance to help the victims!! Ineke

(Photo from Jaya)

Feb 10, 2014


From André's Twitter and Facebook

Upsetting all these images that reach us from the UK. 
It reminds me of the flooding in my own country 
back in 95.
I want to help with a fundraising concert.

Feb 8, 2014

MIRUSIA'S MINI CONCERT




MIRUSIA'S MINI CONCERT
Feb. 2, 2014: Overwhelming interest in Mirusia’s mini concert By Marjolijn Langens Drunen- " The Angel of Australia", soprano Mirusia Louwerse, in order to promote her new album "Beautiful that Way", conducted a live mini concert in the theater "de Voorste Venne." on Sunday, February 2nd. The interest in this unique performance was so overwhelming that an additional concert was added. It was 2010 when Mirusia visited Drunen for the first time. At the City Hall Square, she touched thousands of visitors during the Dickens Festival with the song "Ave Maria". Since then a lot has happened. "Together with André Rieu I've toured the world before I returned to Australia in 2012" said Mirusia. "There I released my CD "Home". But my heart is always in two places; the Netherlands are also home for me. So the "Second Home Tour" was a logical title. Mirusia lives a busy life in two worlds; Australia and the Netherlands, one with a solo career and the other touring with André Rieu. "I try to spend my time 50/50" is her solution. "Together with André I make annual plans which sometimes involve difficult choices. But I believe that you should do what you enjoy. In addition, André helps me happily and gives my solo career chances. He is my mentor. Without him I would probably not be where I am today."

Beautiful That Way
Her latest album 'Beautiful that way ' is available on CD as well as DVD and recorded live in the concert hall "La Bonbonniere" in Maastricht. That was no coincidence. "I knew about the hall from the time I lived in Maastricht" Mirusia said. "It was my dream to be able to perform there once." For the live recordings the sky was the limit and both the choir and orchestra were flown over from Australia." With a live recording many different things come into consideration rather than with a studio recording, such as the noise from the hall," said Mirusia. "The public plays a major role in that. A live show brings more feelings and it's nice that I can tell my own story since every song has a special meaning for me. "We thought long about the title. "Second Home" did not sound well enough. Mirusia wanted something "more beautiful." And that is how the title came about. Because let's face it: "Life is Beautiful" the singer says cheerfully. "My motto always is: "Smile without a reason, and laugh a little more."

Miniconcert
Mirusia interrupts her tour with André Rieu through Germany in order for her to visit Drunen for a second time. "The idea of a free mini concert came from Bert de Bel, who is from "That's Entertainment" says Mirusia." I was immediately enthusiastic. That way I can give something back to all my fans that always support me. In addition, I also find it very fun to do. "The announcement did not go unnoticed. No less than 650 interested parties registered rows deep at the doors of the Voorste Venne, so an additional performance had to be inserted. Mirusia’s family was also present, and in particular her grandmother. "In earlier times, when she spent some time with us in Australia, and when I was little, we often sang songs together," recalls Mirusia. "Later we sang a song together in a show in Eindhoven which was a children’s song about a duckling written by my father. Those are very special moments." This time too she managed to move the audience with her beautiful voice. Her hand reaches meaningful to heaven when she performs her own version of "Ave Maria" in memory of her friends she lost in 2007. The audience is surprised when Mirusia dedicates and sings the Dutch song "Give me your fear" to her good friend Fons. A well deserved standing ovation is the logical consequence. The CD and DVD can be ordered combined or separately through www.thatsentertainment.nl



Thanks to Ineke for sending this and John translating it. 
(Photos from Ineke) 

Feb 6, 2014

Fencing Champion Heidemann Accompanies Rieu to China

Fencing Champion Heidemann Accompanies The "Waltz King"

Feb. 5, 2014: Olympic fencing champion Britta Heidemann will go on tour with André Rieu, and is an unknown amongst the female singers. In April, the sword expert will accompany the Dutch "Waltz King" André Rieu on his tour to China, Taiwan and Singapore. 

Heidemann, who is fluent in Chinese,  will translate Rieu's presentations to the public and sing a Chinese folk song during the show's program. "I am looking forward to the concerts. China is my second home. Standing there live on stage with André Rieu and the Johann Strauss Orchestra in front of thousands of spectators, is absolutely fantastic", said the Beijing Olympic champion.

Thanks to Ineke for sending this and John Translating it.

Jan 28, 2014

Interview with André Rieu: "I play what comes to mind"


Interview with André Rieu: "I play what comes to mind"
Hollywood is Dearer to Him Than Hamlet

NUREMBERG - January 27, 2014: André Rieu is a master of light entertainment. With his programs the violinist, orchestra leader and arranger not only fills large halls, but he is also especially well known for his mass appeal on television appearances. We wanted to know from the Dutchman, how he puts his programs together, and what he thinks of "serious" classical music and why he almost became a pizza parlor-host ...


Nuremberg Newspaper: Mr. Rieu, how do you select the works which you perform?
André Rieu: Quite simple: I of course do that with my entire heart. If a piece touches me, then I know that it will also touch my audience – no matter the manner or fashion whatsoever. If I want them to cry because I already cried when I heard that song for the first time, then I arrange it so that it will then also come across to the public that way.

Nuremberg Newspaper: Could you tell us how a piece must be musically designed, so that it fits your show?
André Rieu: That's intuition. We were once in a bar with colleagues after a television production while on tour. My pianist had a thick book with all sorts of pieces which we were just playing through and I said: "If it fits; No - no - no - yes! And the guy from the production company said to me the next day: "Now I understand …., you do it just with your intuition"

Nuremberg Newspaper: Does the music have to be "beautiful"?
André Rieu: That depends. Beautiful can just be relative. One finds Mozart beautiful, the other one not. Still others feel Wagner's "Ring" entertaining and more beautiful than an operetta by Offenbach. We play music which I find touching and which appeals to me. And that is mostly nice, yes.

Nuremberg Newspaper: And you can often clap along with you ...
André Rieu: That is not the case with all of the pieces. You know, today there are more and more people studying me and wonder: "What André’s secret is." They analyze me from right to left and from top to bottom (laughs). They have all sorts of explanations that I transform classical music into a single sausage. That my audience goes home incredibly happy, no one speaks of that.

Nuremberg Newspaper: Could you tell us, whom from today’s composers you like best?
André Rieu: I think Andrew Lloyd Webber is a brilliant composer, he has written many wonderful pieces.

Nuremberg Newspaper: What would happen if you would ever perform an entire Beethoven symphony?
André Rieu: I would never do that. Because, I would feel too restricted. I know the entire classical music and I have lived in it, my father was a conductor. I know it all and I would never do that. Maybe you can compare that with an actor who wants to play "Hamlet". But there are also many others who instead go to LA, make famous movies and by that make them feel so much better.

Nuremberg Newspaper: And you will not play "Hamlet" in a theater but rather in a big Hollywood movie?
André Rieu: I think so, yes. I have a good relationship with Anthony Hopkins, and he says that too. When the intellectual critics ask him: "Why do you play in such a movie, while you can perform Shakespeare in London in the theater?" – He the answers: "I do it for the money" (laughs), and then they all change their tune. No, I would not say it so blatantly "just for the money" - but a Beethoven symphony, that would make me feel too restricted.

Nuremberg newspaper: Why "restricted?" Isn’t that beautiful music?
André Rieu: No, not an entire symphony that would bore me. I would take the most beautiful parts from there if I would do that. I would take a part of the symphony, shorten it and then make a hit out of it. Besides, there are enough classical orchestras in the world who play that completely. Our success is that we are totally very different. Thus we appeal to an audience which might not dare to enter the great concert halls. Mahler, Bruckner, Bartok are all "too heavy". With us they feel at home. There are people who have not danced in years. With us they stand up and do that, that's fantastic.

Nuremberg Newspaper: Do you then play Mozart's "Eine Kleine Nachtmusik" in its entirety?
André Rieu: No, only the most beautiful parts. Our evenings are not concert evenings in the "classical" sense. There are always potpourris.

Nuremberg Newspaper: In classical music there is much drama and conflict. Do you prefer the joyful side of the Classics?
André Rieu: Yes. Conflicts and drama, that is all well and good, but not for me while on stage. I have had enough conflict and drama in my life; I like the sunny side of life. One can easily compose an evening with drama and everything else - but it's much harder to make the people laugh. I like that much better. Besides: In every German or Dutch small town there is a symphony orchestra playing all these symphonies. I know them all, every one - but for me that is too boring.

Nuremberg Newspaper: Are you more of a conductor or a soloist?
André Rieu: Phew, in the sense I am neither a pure conductor, soloist, entertainer nor businessman. I am ultimately a combination of them all - and that's why I am successful, I think. I studied the violin, but not conducting in the classical manner or studies in business. But I can conduct, and above all, I can make music.

Nuremberg Newspaper: How important are violin solos in your concerts?
André Rieu: That depends in each case on the program, whether I feel like it, or if it fits into the program. Every year I make a different program.

Nuremberg Newspaper: But what exact part do you play in your concerts, the first violin parts?
André Rieu: I play whatever comes to mind.

Nuremberg Newspaper: In many photos you are seen with a violin ...
André Rieu: That is logical, that is my image. I am also known as a violinist.

Nuremberg Newspaper: And you also own a very valuable one too.
André Rieu: I own three violins including a Stradivarius from 1732. To own this violin is for me personally great pleasure and fun.

Nuremberg Newspaper: In your autobiography it states that you almost opened up a pizza restaurant.
André Rieu: We wanted to actually open up a pizzeria, but that still remains just an idea. Back then we had already made a menu card and the most expensive pizza was "Pizza Paganini". The plan was then for me to play the violin while this pizza was being served. And for that reason, I again began to practice - and then I thought: "No, I will just omit the Pizzeria."


Thank you to Benny and Ineke for sending this and John Translating it for us.

Jan 23, 2014

André Rieu's Wife On Their Marriage

 André Rieu
What His Wife Reveals About Their Marriage

She loves the sound of Waltzes and would dance to the music the rest of her life. As long as it pleases him. As luck would have it, fate sent André Rieu his big love, Marjorie. "We were meant for each other" he says lovingly. But where is the woman behind the Waltz King, whom is seldom seen? The New Post was granted an interview with this lady who teaches German and Italian. She speaks about the highs and lows of their 40 year marriage, her jealousies (or lack of) and her passions.

"It was love at first sight."

Marjorie knew from early on that André would be the man of her life. "I was 15 and he was 13. Even back then there was already something special. Love grew more and more over the years - even until now". Even now when the couple has not been afforded many freedoms. When André goes on tour, Marjorie stays behind at home, so that she herself can concentrate more on the music.

Is that for you a form of relaxation? No, if I am required to always travel the world with the orchestra, that costs me too much time. I believe that when my husband André is on tour, he is happy. Currently he and his entourage are touring Germany, and in May they will tour Austria and Switzerland. 

Although the star violinist appears on stage with beautiful female singers and is admired by millions of women, Marjorie leaves him be. Indicating a deep and great trust. Marjorie is of one thing very sure: "I know he loves me. The admiration for stars has nothing to do with love. I for instance admire Uwe Kockisch and Guenther Jauch, but only in their role of actor and presenter." From home she organizes the tours, which leaves her husband free during his tours. "That we can work together so closely in harmony," we find that to be a great gift.


Today the star violinist is again on top. But that was not always so. In the beginning of André's career it was Marjorie who earned the couple's livelihood. And when the virtuoso became famous, stress and pressure began to eat away at him. Three years ago when he had a breakdown in his health and had to cancel his tours, it was again Marjorie who stood by him. She admits: "Of course I was worried. Not only for him, but also for the company." Strength gave her an unshakable optimism. "I never lost hope that he would be well again." 

While many couples succumb to such a huge setback, it welded André and Marjorie even closer together. She says: "We love each other and we share our passion for music. What more can I want?"

And money - does that play an important roll in your life?  "When you have none in order to provide for your children, that is terrible. But more money does not make us happier. We find happiness in other things. In love for instance".
Thank You to Ineke and Kati for sending this and John for Translating it.

André Rieu Announces First Concert in China


‘The King of Waltz’ André Rieu Announces First Concert in China

André Rieu, violin master, conductor and showman, one of the best-selling live acts in the world, is finally coming to China. On April 12th, 2014 André Rieu and his Johann Strauss Orchestra will be performing in the Shanghai Mercedes-Benz Arena. For Rieu, this is the first time performing in Southeast Asia and he is looking forward very much to his debut in China. Tickets are available from January 23rd ... Talk Magazine

Jan 20, 2014

André Rieu Has Composed Three Pieces For Dutch Film

André Rieu Has Composed Three Pieces For a Film

AMSTERDAM - He's still one of the main export products of the Netherlands and now also has his name on the credits of a Dutch film . At the request of Johan Nijenhuis, André Rieu composed three songs for the latest film by this director: "Tuscan wedding."

In May it was announced that Rieu would provide the music for this film. In the meantime, the compositions are finished. It is the first time that the famous violinist and conductor engaged in film music, although previously he did compose music for the German TV series Donna Leon. For this romantic comedy, Rieu together with Frank Steijns, a violinist in his Johann Strauss Orchestra, composed these pieces; "the Tuscan Wedding Waltz", "Volare con Bella" and "Tarantella". The title song of the film is being sung by the Italian singer Anna Lisa.

Inspiration

The subject "Wedding in Tuscany" was very inspiring for us. We were able to enjoy a deliciously Italian lifestyle in both the compelling romantic melodies like the "Tuscan Wedding Waltz", and also in the exuberant, radiant lifestyle of the tarantella. "These pieces will definitely be on my next CD, which will be released worldwide,'' says Rieu.

"Tuscan Wedding" is the unofficial sequel to the film "In Love with Ibiza" and will be available in the cinema effective January 30th. Jan Kooijman and Lieke van Lexmond play the leading roles in this film. It was announced Sunday that the film has already been sold to South Korea.

Thanks to Ineke for sending this and John Translating it.

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Photo Taken at Mexico City Concert ~ September 2013

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"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

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