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Two Vienna concerts November 16 and 17, 2022.
Two years ago we had purchased our tickets for the Vienna concert of November 2021. We booked a hotel and the night train, but two days in advance the concert had to be cancelled due to Covid 19. Ruud and Ineke decided still to travel and make the best of our Vienna trip. At least Vienna is a lovely city. They were very strict on corona rules and none of the offered (smaller) concerts in the city could go on, but to our surprise very crowded Christmas markets were allowed!
The red sign below our feet, says: “Take care: flower bulbs are sleeping here”.
While preparing our journey, our Maastricht friends Jean and Marie-Jeannne surprised us with a YouTube video: "the making of Schönbrunn Vienna" in 2006. We had not seen this video before and it blew us away. How amazing! So fascinating to see. The duration of the video is 20 minutes. We add a picture here of the fangroup of July 2006!
November 19, 2022. André Rieu performed two concerts in the “Wien Stadthalle”, which is Austria’s largest event center, consisting of 6 large halls, in Vienna. Jo Cortenraedt, a journalist from Limburg, was in Vienna and wrote a column for the Chapeau Magazine (Below). He describes the fatigues of traveling all the time and why the fans sometimes miss soloists or orchestra members for a while, which clarifies a lot: “Some take a daily Siësta, others regularly take a week off to recharge the battery”. Our note: Anyone can be replaced, except André!! Poor André!
November 19, 2022. Chapeau Magazine, Column by Jo Cortenraedt. Translation by Ineke/John. Fitness battle for musicians on tour. It seems so nice, to travel around the world while playing music. Of course it is, because you can make music in all kinds of countries for a usually appreciative audience. But it's not just all glamour and fun, as I noticed again this week, when I was in Vienna for a few days with André Rieu and his entire entourage. It is very difficult to move as a musician from country to country, from city to city, even though the care is still so good. The Maastricht orchestra leader and his orchestra, plus a lot of employees around who you don't see on stage, who have been repeating concerts all year, which were previously on the agenda but were canceled due to corona. That's catching up. This fall, the entire company flew to South America for performances in Chile and Uruguay, among others. There are still a few flights to be made on that continent, due to the large distances involved. And for weeks all kinds of cities in Europe have been treated, and these days including Bratislava and Skopje. Since at every airport one has to go through the entire ceremony of checking-in, security and especially waiting, a lot of time passes for everything but creative matters. Then by bus to the hotel, then by bus to the relevant music hall, eat together and then wait again until you can start performing. And the next day you go on again. You're away from home for a few weeks, always on the move. Of course, those musicians do it all for their profession and making music for an enthusiastic audience, which gives more energy than such an Austrian drink. And during the day, with a bit of luck, you can visit special places in the city in question. You are then a world traveler in optima forma. But still, the jet lag, the hanging around, the waiting, it takes its toll. That applies to all those big orchestras, in whatever genre. Whether it's, for example, the Vienna Philharmonic (most recently touring Asia for almost three weeks), the Royal Dutch Concertgebouw Orchestra, or the Rolling Stones, and everything in between. It all seems like a lot of fun and it is, but it's also grueling. It is not surprising that André Rieu brings along his personal trainer who works with him every day to maintain his physical fitness. And Mick Jagger also does everything to stay fit. Just try to stand and jump on stage for about three hours, almost every night!! Especially at that age, that is very cleaver. But also many younger musicians do a lot of sports, they are right in that aspect. So I have a lot of respect for these traveling artists who show their musical skills all over the world. If they didn't, many unforgettable moments could not be experienced. Many millions of people are provided a fantastic evening. Most also build in rest breaks to stay in balance, otherwise they won't survive. One swears by a daily siesta, the other regularly takes a week off to recharge the battery. There are, of course, those who do not take a rest in the euphoria of the life force. But it's like an electric car. It drives fantastic, but if you don't regularly charge it, you come to a complete standstill. Fans have the idea that it is always a party for those musicians. And the neighbors think they're going "on vacation" when they go on tour. But in reality it is mostly hard work. With a very nice result and an incredible amount of satisfaction, that is true.
After a long absence we were happy to see Mireille Brepols back on stage.
Fans find each other: Ineke (NL), Martine Rapin, Michelle Flament, Karin Grandvaux, (France).
Sopranos: Madieke Schoots, Micaëla Oeste, Anna Majchrzak.
Tenors: Gary Bennett, Béla Mavrak, Serge Bosch.
Gunilla Burlin was in Vienna with her husband (Sweden).
Sightseeing Vienna, catching up with world stars.
Hundertwasserhaus and Museum Kunst Haus Wien. Even the restrooms are special.
Capuchin church and crypt with the mighty German/Austrian/Hungarian emperor’s families. On the picture are sarcophagi of Sisi (Elisabeth), her husband Franz Joseph and their son Rudolph.
Harmony Parlor fan group on Facebook: The fans had noticed that many orchestra members were not there during the latest tour and wondered what had happened. This is Ineke’s short report of the two wonderful concerts in Vienna. We missed: Martine Wijers, Roland Lafosse, Roger Diederen, Donij van Doorn, Ellie Moran, Karin Haine, Lin Jong, Boris Goldenblank, Linda Custers. Frank replaced Martine on the piano. The first concert Willy Huppertz replaced Roger and the second concert Romano, Roger’s son. Madieke was one of the sopranos together with Micaëla and Anna. We saw Belinda Evans back in the choir, with Anna Reker, Christina, Joline, Madieke, Kalki and Virgenie. Mireille Brepols was back in the percussion section, but Dean still played the timpani. We met Gunilla Burlin and her husband Björn from Sweden, and three ladies: Martine Rapin, Michelle Flament and Karin Grandvaux from France. And of course we spent some lovely days in a rainy Vienna, brightened up with Christmas decorations.
November 26, 2022. Duration of the video: 8 minutes. Translation Ineke/John, Subtitles: Ruud. Limbourgeois (L1 TV) about Vienna with André Rieu. A report from Vienna, where the Maastricht orchestra leader André Rieu gave two concerts last week. Program maker Jo Cortenraedt walked with André Rieu through the streets of the Austrian capital city, discovering the birthplace of his music.
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