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Sep 5, 2007

André Rieu Comes To Australia


André Rieu Comes To Australia

September 5th, 2007
"King of Waltz" André Rieu in Australia for the first time
by Erika Gelinard

Dutch "king of waltz" André Rieu is visiting Australia for the first time this month, coming to Sydney on September 19 and 20, then to Melbourne to promote his first Australian tour in 2008 with the quaintly named Johann Strauss Orchestra. But Rieu maintains the suspense when it comes to tour dates and the program: these won't be announced until he appears on Australian TV.

The 57 year-old violinist and conductor, international star of light classical music, has been a phenomenon in Europe, America and Japan since the release of Strauss & Co in 1994. Catching up with this trend, Universal Music says that the number of Australian fans - mainly mature women - has soared in the last year. It's their first chance to see the man whose CDs they've been buying in truckloads.

"André's success in Australia is unmatched in chart history. The domination of the Australian DVD chart is an absolute phenomenon in terms of sales," says Universal Music Australia MD, George Ash. On August 6, Rieu's Aria was in the Australian Top 10 and his last DVD release in October 2006, New York Memories has made double platinum here.

André Rieu's accessible music, romantic performances, melodramatic staging and lavish costumes - his future shows even include Viennese ballet dancers, ice dancers and actors on stage - have given him pop star status. He has sold 23 million CDs and DVDs worldwide and won the World Music Awards in 1996 and 1998.

Rieu has something of the pop star: romantic wavy hair, broad telegenic smile and trademark tuxedo, swooning fans and those spectacular concerts.
"At one of our concerts you'll see me and the orchestra, and the audience too, all having a lot of fun together. Swaying with the music, humming along, clapping, jumping up and down", he says on his website: it's not exactly the Stones but millions simply don't care.

Rieu's desire to bring the classical repertoire to a large popular public goes back to his childhood experience as a conductor's son: "I can remember being surprised at the sombre atmosphere during the concerts ... even though the music seemed to me to radiate so much joy!"

Although this will be Australia's first sighting of Rieu in the flesh, he's been a prolific artistic with 19 CDs released here since 1994. And in case that's not enough, before the end of the year, another five albums and DVDs are promised with Wonderful World scheduled for November release.

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Pierre and André September 30, 2016 Maastricht

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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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