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Feb 25, 2011

André Rieu Soloist Mirusia's Life as An Endless Fairytale

My Life is Like an Endless Fairytale
How Princess Mirusia Was Attracted to Her Friend Sebastiaan

Weekend Magazine: She definitely did not believe it was André Rieu who called her, but that single telephone call changed the life of Australian Mirusia Louwerse from one moment to the next. That is to say that two days later she was in the Netherlands for an audition, and since then has been performing as soprano next to the Maastricht violinist for the last four years. And not too insignificantly: it brought her the love of her life, sound technician Sebastiaan.
"Oh yeah, sure"’ was Mirusia Louwerse’s reaction when the phone in the Australian city of Brisbane rang and André Rieu introduced himself on the other end of the line. "Yes, really" said André. "Because, I received an e-mail." At that moment a light went on for the now 25 year old soprano. "That had to be the doings of my Aunt Els from Ulvenhout."
Mirusia was born in Australia in 1985. Her Dutch parents had immigrated there five years earlier. Her father, hailing from Zeeland (Province in the Southwest of the Netherlands) and an avid water sports individual became a ship designer and builder in Brisbane. Together with his wife, they realized quite soon that daughter Mirusia was crazy about singing. Even as a little girl she was already up on stage. "Once I was going to do a solo, but to the amazement of my parents I did not start. But instead waited for the choir, which was also on stage, until it had left. After all I was going to sing a solo!!!" From age fourteen she has been singing professionally. "First as a country singer and later on I changed more into the direction of jazz and classical music.
Afterwards I went to the conservatorium because classical music is what I really wanted to do. But unfortunately there is not much of a market for that in Australia. I did however in 2006, as the youngest ever, win the prestigious Dame Sutherland Opera Award. All of my mother and father’s relatives live in the Netherlands, including Aunt Els. She once told me about the program "Una Voce Particolare" by Ernst Daniel Smid and entered my name. "Shall I also continue to look and see what I can do for you?" she suggested. That was fine with me. That’s how I knew when André said something about an e-mail that it had to be from her. I could not believe what I was hearing. Especially when André asked if I would like to come to the Netherlands right away. As it happens, he was looking for a good female singer. He and his wife Marjorie picked me up from the airport and we clicked right away. I immediately sensed that we were family, just as if I was one of their nieces. And I do call him "Uncle André" frequently.
In the meantime Mirusia has already been part of the Maastricht violinist’s orchestra for four year. "Life is like an endless fairytale. I travel all over the world. Soar like an angel through the air while I sing and I view everyone in the orchestra as my family." And that family feeling is real because over the years many couples have formed from within the orchestra. Mirusia too has found the love of her life, thanks to André. "That happened during the recordings of a road soap of André in and around "de Efteling." I was walking around there like a princess. André always has the same people working for him when they recorded that particular soap. Sebastiaan was one of them. He found this "princess" to be quite interesting and she him too. But unlike many other couples within the orchestra, we have no plans for children or a wedding. Definitely not. I am only 25. I still have many years left for that.
TRIBUTE
A couple of years ago, Mirusia together with André, produced a CD specifically for the Australian market, titled "Waltzing Matilda," which consists entirely of Australian melodies and children’s songs. Waltzing Matilda is an Australian folk song, and is sometimes even called the "unofficial" Australian anthem. I also received a lot of requests for the "Ave Maria" by Schubert, which people would really like to see on a CD. I asked André if we could make just a single for that alone. He suggested however that we make an entire CD. And that became "Always and Forever", a story which in fourteen songs describes my life with André. With songs like "Feed the Birds" from Mary Poppins as a tribute to my huge idol, Julie Andrews. Memories from Cats and Solveig’s Song from Peer Gynt. I am so proud of it. The CD was first released in Australia and is now available here too in the Netherlands. Life has become quite exceptional the last few years. I realize that every time I walk through Maastricht. In certain places it is just like the "Efteling" but only bigger. But on the other hand, it can be rather small when you compare it to Australia."
BACK TO AUSTRALIA
Mirusia found a beautiful apartment in Maastricht. It is an older house from around 1700 with lots of beams and windows. And with pebbles on the sidewalk. I am enjoying myself here to the fullest. Except for when the weather is gray and somber for a long time. I cannot get used to that. That is winter here, so they tell me. Yes, that is something we do not know in Australia. There the weather is always nice. Although she likes it here in Maastricht, this coming year she is going to be living again in Australia. Definitely as long as her parents are still alive. Because I miss them so very much. The three of us always went somewhere together and now I only see them once a year. Either they come here, or I go that direction. I suffer badly from homesickness and they do not want to come and live in the Netherlands. It means that I will see Sebastiaan much less. Fortunately, he's usually there when we go on tour.
Thanks to Ineke for sending this and John for ©Translating it.

1 comment:

GillWeb said...

What a lovely article. Thank you for this great translation so that we can all enjoy reading it.

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