Because I will be seeing world-renown violinist Andre Rieu and his famed Johann Strauss Orchestra tonight at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey, I figured I would get back to a “Musical Monday” post with one of my favorite pieces of his music. It is hard to believe that I discovered him accidentally, a little more than a year ago, when I was looking for a certain piece of music on Youtube, and his name popped up in the suggestions sidebar. Having some free time, I decided to watch that video; then another, and another, until finally, I was completely hooked. As I wrote last October, Andre Rieu is one of those rare figures who can actually make classical music fun for those who consider it dull. I have always liked it, so he did not have to be so persuasive on me, but it seems after the feedback I have gotten after writing that article, many people became fans of him having never listened to classical music beforehand.
To be honest, I never thought I would actually get a chance to see him in person, because I did not think he would ever be playing in this area again, but my parents surprised me with tickets for my birthday in July, and now the time has finally come. After reading some reviews of concerts on his current tour, I am even more excited, because people have written that they got everything they expected. The sets and video backgrounds are spectacular, as are how he and his musicians are dressed. So, to further get in the mood, I will share with you one of his most well known renditions, one written by Johann Strauss, that the “King of Waltz” seems to play at nearly every concert: “The Blue Danube”.
Lastly, I will now leave you with a quote from Rieu himself, which epitomizes how he feels about his work: “People don’t need to worry that they need to know everything about classical music to attend the concert. In Mozart’s time, people would whistle his tunes on the street. That’s what it’s all about: Classical music belongs to everybody, young and old, educated or not.”