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Watch: Maestro catches presenter by surprise

September 20, 2017 by norman lebrecht

12 comments.



Comments (12)

  1. stefan says:

    that terrible and awful Rieu……

    1. William Safford says:

      I do not understand the hatred for him and his music. It’s not my cup of tea, but it does not evoke any strong negative emotions in me.

    2. Dan P. says:

      My favorite Andre Rieu performance was the performance of his orchestra – with the women in brightly colored and frilly frocks – playing Ravel’s Bolero. The real surprise, though, was when the chorus entered with all that ooh-ing and ah-ing. What a masterpiece of bad taste! All it needed was a bevy of strippers wending its way through the orchestra. If the audience considers the original too tough to take, then why not give it real light music, rather than cheapening this repertoire..

      1. Sue says:

        Couldn’t agree more, BUT there are millions who love this stuff – as we can see from those televised ‘spectacles’ of his. Rieu knows this and has tapped into a market which has made him a fortune, I shouldn’t wonder. Good for him!! Last night I caught a brief glimpse on subscription TV of a concert from Amsterdam, with lifesized replicas of the Schonnbrun in Vienna! He bragged about how it took an army of men to contruct it! I thought instantly of Cecil B. DeMille and his biblical schlockfests!! There ARE audiences for this high camp, but don’t please let us confuse it with high art; those things necessary to sustain life after food, shelter and water!!

        1. Dan P. says:

          I agree with you that there are many people who enjoy this kind of thing ,which is their right. And Mr. Rieu has every right to perform whatever he’d like to as well. By the same token, I also think that manufacturers of Kentucky Fried Chicken, corn dogs, soft drinks, potato chips, cigarettes, and the thousands of snack cakes available have every right to serve the millions of obese people who love these things. But that doesn’t make either their manufacture or consumption healthy. I happen to love and admire all sorts of music (classical, jazz, rock, and all sorts of popular music – although what I care about most is classical), I just think that Mr. Rieu’s productions have all the nutrients of a corn dog and chili cheese fries washed down by a Mountain Dew. One can like them till the end of time, but it doesn’t make the very good for you.

  2. fred says:

    awful and terrible???
    On the contrary, one of the last hopes to get classical music across.
    Regrettably the quality of the soloists (especially the singers) is disappointing.
    He should get joint concerts with jonas Kaufman, netrebko or other greats…

    1. Sue says:

      You misunderstand the Rieu product. He isn’t pedalling ‘classical music’ but popular music/crossover which is played by a classically trained orchestra. Serious music lovers wouldn’t touch his stuff with a barge pole (I compare it to packaged/casked wine versus a good vintage in a bottle). But there are HUGE audiences for this type of music and, from what I can tell, they love it – cooing, swaying, dancing, drinking, eating and cuddling along all the while. It is to classical music what a fish is to a bicycle. Rieu gets all that and he’s an entrepreneur who has a made a fortune out of it!! I dislike intensely his tasteless livery, smirking mien and presentational schtick, but there are millions who like it.

      1. fred says:

        since when isn’t Strauss or Léhar classical music? Who are you to decide? Only Stockhausen is good enuff? Bwaa elitist thinkers on a deserted island.
        To each his own ur entitled to your dislike, yet he IS a classically trained musician not a dilettante and yes, he’s the last to get the general audience into classical music. And yes all praise to him to do all this without subdidies. And this from someone who has never bought any cd/dvd of his.
        I’m sure the kaufmanns and the netrebkos of this world would LOVE to do a joint concert with him.

        1. Sue says:

          Compared to Beethoven and Bach that isn’t classical music. But continue with your rant if it makes you feel better. (Watch out for toys being thrown from cots!)

        2. Joao says:

          Strauss and Léhar are indeed classical music of the highest quality but only when conducted by Karajan, Kleiber, Krauss and the few others at their level.

  3. Wannabe says:

    He’s fine when he’s doing “light stuff” – marches, waltzes, polkas.
    But I take issue when he starts doing bigger works. He does them out of context, not conveying the intention of the composer(s) through the bigger picture.
    It’s like bad marketing – he’s selling a watered down and insincere product.

  4. Nattie Roman says:

    I agree with the first commenter. If you do not like a certain form of music, don’t listen to it. I look at the crowds at his concerts and people are having a good time (often swaying to the music). And he plays light music just fine.

    One would think that classical music lovers would be a bit more open-minded.


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