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Jan 25, 2010

André Rieu Enjoys Surprise UK Success

Dutch Violin Star André Rieu Enjoys Surprise UK Success

Monday January 25, 2010 UK by Steve Hargrave

He's bigger than Coldplay and Britney Spears, and now finally Dutch violin star André Rieu has waltzed his way to success on these shores.

The 60 year old is a massive star elsewhere in the world, selling out stadiums to become the sixth highest grossing live act of 2009 beating Britney, Chris Martin and co, Elton John and Tina Turner, but in the UK he's a virtual unknown.

Now though, Rieu is sitting in the top 10 of the UK album chart with "Forever Vienna", an impressive feat for a recording of traditional waltzes. "There's a big audience out there who loves our music," Rieu told Sky News as he toasted his new success."I think they were a little bit forgotten by the record companies. I think classical music has so many beautiful things to show the people, and that's what I do."

Rieu's attempts to put the showbiz back into classical may annoy some purists, but you can't deny the size of his ambitions. Last year his huge stadium tour included two ice-skating rinks, a ballroom, flying angels, bagpipes and a horse-drawn carriage. The stage was even larger than U2's.

"It was the biggest touring set in the world" smiles Rieu proudly. "We travelled with 500 people. That's madness, but it was fun to do, and it worked. Usually fun and classical music doesn't go together, I don't know why."

Rieu's a wonderfully quirky man who rides a bike around sound check and insists he wants to be the first performer to play waltz music on the moon.Thanks to his popularity in Australia, he even played his violin down Ramsay Street, during a cameo turn in Neighbours.

But it's his instinct for crowd-pleasing that has helped him sell more than 30 million albums, and earnt him the unlikely status as a classical sex symbol."Am I?" he laughs. "It's the way we play music, the way I make contact with the audience."That's what was always lacking in classical music. If you want to clap, then just do it."

Click here to watch ►Video of Interview With André by Sky News

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting, Sue.
This article captures it all, doesn't if? And the video is fun.
Wish we could get a turn-around like this over here.

Laurie

Kay said...

I read today where he has moved up to No. 4 on the pop charts in the U.K. He is really on a roll!! I'm so happy for him!

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Pierre and André September 30, 2016 Maastricht

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