In praise of André Rieu

One of my favourite stories of the late Sir Neville Marriner is of the time he was told that a refugee violinist had been taken off the Academy’s train during the night and was being held by police in Salzburg while his papers were checked.

As soon as the train reached Vienna, Neville called the Musikverein, where he was booked in for sold-out concerts, and told them not a note would be heard until the missing violinist was restored to his rightful seat. Hours later, he was.

Not every conductor shows such care for musicians, especially when he also the entrepreneur and owner of the touring company. Most impresarios would replace the missing musician without a second thought.

So hats off today to André Rieu, the popular Dutch violinist, who has called off a fully-booked UK tour after one of his musicians was felled by a heart attack and taken to hospital in critical condition. 

The shows could have gone on, but Rieu let humanity take precedence over entertainment values. He said: ‘Many of my orchestra members have been with me for more than 25 years. We are a family. We are deeply saddened by this tragic event and it is impossible for us to continue our tour as planned.’

Neville would have approved (and there’s no higher praise in my lexicon).

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  • That is such a touching report to read of Andre’s unflailing loyalty. Bravo for reporting and Bravo Andre. I only wish we in Australia could send wishes personally to the Johann Strauss orchestra, to Andre, and to the member of the orchestra and his family directly.

    Perhaps you could recommend how we could channel our best wishes and prayers via social media? Is there a production company who could pass on our condolences?

    I would be very grateful if you could respond should you get this message. I saw the orchestra everytime they came to Australia and ofcourse no better performance on stage has ever topped it.

    All my love to the victim of such a terrible incident and his family( I just wish I knew who it was), and to all his extended family of the orchestra.

    Janet Lee Taylor (and Betty, my mum).

    Thoughts are with you x x

      • Yes, it is very thoughtful. I just couldn’t understand why all the concert tour would have been cancelled over one player unless it was Andre himself who had been taken ill, but it’s his decision. Many will be very disappointed not to be able to go to his show in England this Christmas at least. We wish his player a good recovery but it sounds very serious.

        • The Strauss orchestra is about fun, how could the players convey fun if one of their members is gravely ill? Mr Rieu is totally right and sacrifying a large trunk of income for the orchestra out of an entirely normal feeling of human loyalty and respect, is laudable.

        • I should have been at Wembley tonight. So very disappointed. My thoughts are with the musicians family but cannot help wishing the concert wasn’t cancelled. When the replacement concerts are announced they will not have the magic of Christmas.

      • Thank you so much Costa, that is wonderful of you. I will show my mum as she’d also iterate my thanks. Andre’s music and visits to Australia since 2008, has been one of the reasons, without a doubt , she has endured the nightmarish years of recovery from a brain heammorage she had in 2009.

        Her shock amd sadness will be relieved somewhat knowing you have relayed this to Andre. She has followed all the orchestra members herself all these years and tells me all about them at each visit to Rod Laver arena, as if they were part of her life too. It is adorable to listen to.

        Can I be a little cheeky and take this opportunity to extend her deepest wishes that he try to bring the orchestra back in 2017 to Australia? I really do not believe she will be here to see him should he return in another 3 yrs time. It is such a long way and less viable economically, but as she can’t fly anymore, it is my one last wish for her to be able to see him one more time. It would surely be a wonderful 90th birthday present. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get through any other way to forward this, and it was world wide ticketing who we booked through who informed me he wasn’t doing anymore “meet amd greets”, so this October was not an opportunity to give that surprise to her. We always sit as close to the front as possible and she literally is refreshed and revitalised after the concert. So much joy lifts a spirit so high, as Andre knows so well!

        Anyway, this wasn’t the reason I responded but perhaps he might think about it some more.

        • Dear Janet and Mother Betty (if I may)
          I did pass on your note to Andre who answered immediately very grateful for your messages. He said he was going back to Leeds to be with his colleague.
          I will make sure he and his son Pierre also see your message about returning to Australia. I know that he loves visiting your country.
          All best to you both.
          Costa

      • Please pass on our prayers and thoughts to Ruud’s family also to Andre and the rest of the orchestra it is a very worrying time for everyone. God is good and I’m sure he will be there to help you all. Hopefully age will be on his side too and aid his recovery.

      • So sorry to hear the sad sad news. Blessings to Ruud his immediate family, his musical family, the JSO, Andre and Pierre.

        It seems only yesterday we saw Rudd in Melbourne, Australia, and this is exactly why these performances are so revered!!!

        It never ceases to amaze me how utterly divine Andre’s messages through his orchestra are. Mainly that the most beautiful thing a person can do is offer his music and share it’s magic with as many people as possible.

        Ruud did that and that is more than anyone can ask for from a human being. I know I lost my Dad when I was 8 and i. His 40’s. He was a musician too and the best thing ever are those happy times shared listening to him play the piano.

        Ruud’s trombone will radiate and heal with love as time goes by and one day the pain will be easier to bear. I wrote Costa to you recently and you directed my note of well wishes to Andre personally.

        Please see if you can, to just do this again for me now that this has happenned. I don’t expect him to read it, but you never never know.

        Love to all and if ever anyone ever doubts giving their all if they are going to do something, they will never doubt again after seeing one of Andre’s concerts. If only he knew that he gives so much more than music to the world. He gives hope and love and so much happiness.

        Rest in Peace Rudd,

        Til we meet again,

        Janet Lee Taylor
        And Betty (mum),
        Melbourne, Australia

    • You can leave a message on his website as I personally know they are picked up and read. I’ve already left a message there to be passed on to his wife Lin and family. The musician is called Rudd Merx and he’s the one who balances the trombone on his nose and eats a flower. They have two children aged 13yrs and 15yrs. I say bravo to Andre for getting Rudd and his family back to Maastricht the day have his severe heart attack although unfortunately he is still in a coma.

  • Andre has done the right thing. How could the orchestra who are all so close, have possibly produced the joyful fun concert that is their hallmark, when one of their ‘family’ is fighting for his life in hospital ?
    Well done Andre.

  • Wishing the member of Andre’s orchestra who is in a critical condition at present,a hopeful outcome.Our thoughts are with him,his family & all the orchestra.Life is so precious.
    Jenny

  • Yes, Bravo to Mr. Rieu. Commendable.

    Now…the next time we all explode over a spelling error from Mr. Trump and suggest that it makes him stupid or unfit for office, let’s consider this grammatical gem in this article:

    “…especially when he also the entrepreneur…”

    Pot, meet kettle.

  • I’m not a fan of Andre Rieu’s act, but I admire his loyalty to his orchestra member, though I don’t think anyone would have been bothered by his engaging a substitute, so long as he otherwise does right by the musician with regard to his employment (i.e. not firing him or docking his pay while unable to play). I assume any major orchestra on tour would go on with the show. But there’s nothing here to approve or disapprove; it’s his business, and he is welcome to make such a decision.

    I would consider Sir Neville’s action to be a bit different: He was leveraging his (and the orchestra’s) star power to protect a member of his orchestra who he believed was being mistreated by the Austrian government, and correctly assuming the Musikverein presenters had the connections to resolve it.

  • You are a Mensch and a Musician, Andre. It is no wonder that your musicians love working in your orchestra. And it shows! May the member of the Johann Strauss orchestra who is so ill soon be well again.

    I applaud you, Andre!

  • I have already posted a message elsewhere on the internet but I have to repost on here as it seems as if you are able to pass on our message to Andre and all the orchestra and the musicians family especially his wife.. (have been there myself ) and it is very frightening.
    I was disappointed when I found the concerts were cancelled BUT even more upset at the circumstances you find yourselves in my love and prayers to you all. Please remember we all love you here!!

      • If you can pass messages on please send my love to all, was going to the show tonight 20th December this was my first ever time to see Andre and the orchestra watch them loads of time on sky arts but not see a show yet so when I do go it will be brilliant with all members attending please get well soon thinking of you all x x x
        Mandy

      • I can assure you that Andre has seen them, he has acknowledged both of my mails linking him to this page which he has certainly been following. He writes that the love he is receiving has given him a lot of strength and he is now in Leeds with his colleague. He is a very down-to-earth and unaffected person who genuinely appreciates all that has been written here.

  • I was due to see André at Nottingham last Saturday ,it was a big shock and disappointment at the show being postponed ,however I applaud André for putting humanity before profit .I pray that the musician who took ill makes a full recovery and I look forward to the rearranged concert .

  • We all hope with all our hearts Ruud will be usual, jolly, talented self again. I am personal friends with several of the JSO, mainly the Falize family, and so it really feels like a family member is suffering now.

    • If you are friends with them as you state, did you really have to disrespect the obvious wish of them for the name of the sick orchestra member to be kept private for now?

      Couldn’t you, please, edit your comment and remove the name?

  • Wishing the unwell musician will recover and be able to join his family for Christmas well done André for putting the welfare of your orchestra first you are wonderful we love you here .

  • We too had travelled to Nottingham from the Midlands for Andre Rieu’s concert 17th December and deeply shocked to hear of the severe heart attack suffered by a member of the Orchestra resulting in the postponement of the Concert. Our thoughts go to you all at this difficult time and wish the musician a full recovery and be able to return for future concert tours. We applaud Andre’s decision to cancel this Concert and the rest of the Tour and await the rescheduled date.

  • I was one of three travelling to see the Wembley Arena concert tonight. The news about the cancellation was seen this morning.
    Although we have been looking forward to see the magic live, we fully support Andre and the right decision to cancel under these sad and difficult circumstances.
    Our hearts, love and best wishes go to the family along with the close family of this wonderful orchestra.
    We will look forward to seeing the rescheduled dates, but priorities take a lead and when it comes to health matters, this takes the ultimate priority.
    The decision not only shows how close the orchestra is, this also highlights once again what a remarkable man Andre is.
    The respect and love the man has for all is wonderful. We praise him for this and as it is always said “Music brings people together”.
    Please toward our good wishes along with a special get well soon message to the member of the orchestra concerned.
    Well done Andre for absolutely doing the right thing.

  • My thoughts are with the musician who is ill and wish him a speedy recovery. Hope he/she will be well enough to return home for Christmas.

  • I understand that the decision to cancel was made by all. Andre, the orchestra and all concerned.
    My point and respect still applauds the Orchestra family. Wishing for a speedy recovery and get well soon.
    Special thoughts to the immediate family along with the orchestra family.

  • I think I must be missing something. of course it is very sad that a member of an orchestra is seriously ill but I don’t understand why a whole series of concerts should be cancelled. Would the NY Philarmonic, Berlin Philarmonic for example cancel a tour? most people on this site seem to agree with the decision and those who don’t seem to get abused. I am not lacking compassion, I just want to know why this situation is different from other orchestras who have personal problems and tragedies which they have to perform through. I am not familiar with this orchestra so perhaps it is a dumb question?

    • Yes I think you Have missed the point. The whole of the orchestra is the show. May I join the rest in wishing the member a speedy recovery a be soon back to entertain us.

    • Well said. I’m mystified too. As it happens, although not remotely in the same league I too had a heart attack a couple of years ago. I was due to be some (unpaid) professional stiffening in a local pro/am concert which was raising money for music education projects in our schools. The concert was 1.5 days away and meant a lot to many people. One of the first things I said as I was wheeled from the operating theatre to the high-dependency ward was to get in touch urgently with anyone who might be able to take my place.The concert went ahead without me and with a deputy. I would have been horrified to have done otherwise.
      The comparison of Andre Rieu’s position with Neville Marriner’s is not valid. This poor man is ill, not a victim of overbearing officialdom. To cancel an entire tour for which thousands of people have payed for tickets, not to mention all the peripheral expenses is simply puzzling.

    • I wouldn’t call it a dumb question, supposing that you, as you stated, don’t know this orchestra. Because there is a fundamental difference between Rieu’s show and a classical music concert performed by any Philarmonic. Other classical music acts are about the music itself. As the musicians can present it best. A Rieu concert is about the JOY of the music as perceived TOGETHER. It is a great party, where André, as he already stated many times, comes with his open heart on stage, and asks you to do the same. And the result is an experience where you don’t really care if it’s Brahms or Mozart or Frank Sinatra whose music you hear. You enjoy the time of your life, together with the orchestra. And you can do that because the musicians are genuine.

      Can we now ask André to fake this? Wouldn’t exactly the magic be gone? the very André Rieu feel, that made him so special?

  • Thank you, Ilona for your thoughtful and helpful reply. I was really afraid I was going to cop a lot of abuse so appreciate that I didn’t. I have Googled and found out more about the subject and can understand a bit better now.

    • Thanks for your appreciation and your open-mindedness. Let’s hope that one day we’ll be in the same audience of a Rieu concert, even if not being aware of that and we’ll enjoy the unique Rieu experience. (I started this comment with “I’m glad that I could explain it a bit” – but today it’s not a day when this sounds good. My thoughts are with those whose hearts are heavy with concern. I pray for the sick orchestra member and for all those who love him.)

  • Hello André Rieu and the JSO.
    We love your show and receive so much joy from you, and we can never really get enough of your show.
    We pray for you that you get through this terrible incident all of you and are able to celebrate Christmas with your friends and family and start the new year with all your positive energy.
    We send you all our love and positive energy from your fans in Denmark.
    We love you all very much and miss you when you are not around.

  • My disappointment at not seeing Andre at Wembley this Christmas is far outweighed by my sorrow at the terrible tragedy that has befallen one of Andre’s most wonderfully gifted JSO Friends. I know that Andre and his JSO are an ‘extended family’ and they will all be heartbroken as they keep vigil waiting and hoping for the recovery of their dear Friend. Andre has always given me strength at the many worst times of my life and I send him now all of my love and prayers and pray for the recovery of his, and our, friend.
    Thank you for this opportunity to send my love and support..

  • To All members of the extended Andre Rieu family thankyou for being such fine Human beings you are in my thoughts and prayers.
    I hope it turns out to be a good Christmas for you all

  • some time back i was given a bag full of music cd’s one of which was the Millennium concert of Andre Rieu orchestra this was years after but i was presently it contained a DVD of the concert. from that point on i was smitten by him. i have watched it over and over and also brought other Dvd’s of his orchestra. i have to say every member puts there best into making every once worth every penny. So colourful in every respect. i hope your member gets well and love to his family in the same passion the orchestra gave me.

  • I go to see Andre and the JSO every year at Christmas and had tickets for Wembley on the 20th, had the concerts gone ahead I certainly would not have been able to enjoy the evening knowing that one of the orchestra members is critically ill, there will be other concerts, I’m sure many of Andre’s fans who love him and the JSO totally support his decision. Thoughts and prayers for all of them and especially for the musician and his family. So very sad xxx

  • BRAVO a hundred times to André Rieu and his orchestra for the loving.and heartful concern for the ailing member. Wishing for a fast and full recovery.

  • Mr. Marriner was not always looking out for the players, however. I can recall, during his tenure with the Minnesota Orchestra, when he made a statement that the MO ‘is a good place for players on the way up or on the way down.’

    • And what was wrong with that statement? Surely a conductor is allowed to express an opinion without having his humanity impugned? For heaven’s sake.

  • I have experienced the JOY of JSO through many videos purchased. My respect for the entire operation of this group and the pure JOY that they give is once again embellished by this situation. I only hope one day to see them in person. Till then, my prayers and best wishes for all of them and particularly the one stricken will continue. Thank you, Andre Rieu, for creating and blessing so many with such an orchestra.

  • So moved by the humanity and understanding of Andre Rieu’s decision to forego his UK Tour due to his Musical Family, his orchestra’s deep concern for one of their own felled by a heart attack, I can only wish the musician in hospital every
    blessing of the finest and most loving medical care, to recover and, in time, rejoin Andre Rieu and Musical Family once again on stage ~

    As Mr. Lebrecht writes, Sir Neville Mariner waited to begin a concert in Vienna’s Musikverein, until an orchestra member was safe and sound back to perform ~
    Knowing how unsympathetic many Conductor’s can be, even when losing one’s father occurred & grief forced postponement of major solo engagements, some sans condolences, Andre Rieu’s gesture is beautiful to learn of .., May all be well for a very special human being from Holland with Violin & Baton et al ~

    Musically from America …

    Elizabeth ‘M.’

  • I do understand that Mr Rieu’s performances are about joy, and the concerts could not have had the same magic. However I can’t help but wonder what has happened to “the show must go on”? I bought my mum tickets for her 80th birthday, she has travelled all the way from the Midlands to Kent to stay with us so we could make our way together on the train to Wembley, where we had an overnight reservation. After a very tiring journey to find out it was cancelled was a huge disappointment, and of course I feel for the musician and his family, but to cancel everything?! Do the hundreds of employees of all the venues still get paid?? Mr Rieu can afford to put feelings before profit, but it’s not all his own money he’s sacrificing (we’ve lost a small fortune for nothing and I’m sure we’re not alone) – I can’t help thinking if Louis Tomlinson can sing on TV when his mum’s just died this show could and should have continued, if in a more subdued way. I don’t usually feel I’m the harsh one, but this was a huge thing for my mum, let’s hope she can manage the rescheduled date – and by the way: Christmas music won’t do after Christmas!

    • No offence, but your mother could go to any other classical music concert, no? If it’s the music that she would want to enjoy. I’m sure that there is a classical music orchestra somewhere there.

      But I have a sneaky feeling that you wanted to offer your mother exactly the joy and magic of a Rieu concert. Which part of the “if he doesn’t feel it, the best he could do, is to fake it” thing is that you don’t understand? He should fake it now, and then we should believe next time that he does feel it? that he and his orchestra are genuine?

      And André Rieu doesn’t only play Christmas music. The rescheduled concert will have a different theme. But they will play when they can create a party for the audience.

      I heard arguments about people comparing their work to these concerts. Yes, if you are devastated, you can still work. You can also function more or less properly in your whatever social roles. But can you throw a party where you entertain your guests as if nothing had happened and can you give them genuine joy never to forget?

      Or do you want André and his orchestra go on stage dressed in dark colours, play two hours of Paganini, Brahms and Bach without a word to the audience, bow at the end and leave the stage? They could do that. Would you be pleased then?

      • OK, so when we got home last night, a previous Christmas concert was on the TV at just the time we should have been watching Andre. I admit, I’ve never seen him before, and was upset because of the disappointment for my mum. I understand a bit better now, it’s very joyful, and I didn’t expect the humour. I get what you’re saying about not faking it, but it is a performance, and is to some extent always faked. (He must sometimes be in a bad mood!) Looking forward to the replacement concert, and sincerely hope the orchestra member is recovered and back in his role.

    • If you truly understand what Andre’s concerts are about then you must understand why the rest of the orchestra didn’t feel joyous. The only person they care about right now is their friend and colleagues and rightly so. We are all disappointed but most support their decision.

  • Dearest Andre. All your fans support your decision to cancel your concerts.they can be re scheduled Rudd is an integral part of your great orchestra and will live on through all your dvds.please convey all our love and prayers to his wife and family.let us hope a miracle happens and he is returned to his two familys.

  • It seems some people here do not understand why Andre has cancelled the tour. Anyone like myself who has been a fan of Andre and JSO for many years will understand. Andre and his orchestra cannot be compared to any other orchestra in the world. This is not just a working relationship . This is a family. Each and every one of this wonderful orchestra and their families is treat like family. Some like the ill gentleman have been in this family for more than 20 years. If one is hurting they all hurt.. I know Andre and JSO could not possibly give of their all on stage with such an ache in their hearts and neither could we as an audience sing laugh and dance knowing the circumstances. This is what we would expect Andre to do Bravo Andre . We applaud you Please get well soon .

  • Andre, our thoughts and prayers are with you and your musical family. We were blessed to see your concert in Pensacola, Florida USA ten years ago. I am watching your Christmas DVD right now. It is wonderful to see the compassion of the Holy Spirit working in you as it is alive in your music and visible in the musician expressions and music. God Bless you all and praying for Gods’ will to heal your colleague. Jimmy and Barbara Suttle, Alabama

  • I am deeply sorry to hear the news of Rudd’s heart attack and will hold you all in my heart whilst hoping for good news. I know you are all very close, you could not perform in the way you do without such a close bond, and what hurts one will hurt all of you. It is always particularly difficult just before Christmas. I know from personal experience when I lost my own darling brother on 16th December some years ago. He was only 33 years old and it came out of the blue. Andre has always said that music is always a key to emotion and there will be times when particular music seems unbearable, in my case carols, but it will also become a great comfort. I send hugs to everyone.

    • Dear Gaffney,

      From Australia as I said to Costa (see earlier comments), I am astonished that anyone would think Andre could do anything other than cancel the tour.

      So I wanted to say to you also, because as an author no doubt you see some pretty funny things. What more could he have done than reschedule, offering even those who could not make the rescheduled dates their money back!!

      Speaking from personal experience, having attended all his concerts in Australia(Melbourne) since 2008, musical and emotional magic is created right before one’s very eyes, and it takes the dynamic of the entire orchestra’s heartfelt contributions to make that. Night after night, country after country. If one cog in the wheel is stuck the machine breaks down!! And I only hope that this machine gets up and running again for the sake of Ruud, his family and that includes his musical family obviously.

      I hope you see a concert of Andre and the JSO one day if you haven’t already. Let me know if you ever need a researcher in your neck of the woods. That would be me!! he he :)You never know.

      All the best, and again, thank you for your refreshing contribution. say hi to Andre from me if you write him and oh,

      Have a great Xmas Gaffney,

      Janet Lee Taylor

      Melbourne , Australia.

      • Hello Janet in Australia. Thank you for your warm wishes which I reciprocate. However, I think that you may have me confused with another Gaffney Feskoe (if there actually exists one) as I am not an author nor do I know Mr. Rieu. Very sad to see that his trombonist has past away. Terrible news this.

  • My heartfelt condolences to both Ruud’s families. It is so sad that someone who so full of life has been taken at such a young age.

  • Andre & his orchestra bring enormous joy and pleasure to thousands and thousands of people around the world every year requiring them to be apart from family and home. A huge part of their appeal is their warm and close relationships with each other. Of course people are disappointed at cancellations but how could they possibly perform under such circumstances, they are human after all. Good for you Andre & Orchestra to put your colleague and family first. My husband & I recently met Ruud and his wife in the Square in Christchurch while viewing the ruins of the cathedral and they were so engaging and delightful. So so sad to hear this dreadful news and at such a time of year. Only time will heal but I know Andre and his amazing band members will support Lin and her young family

    • Beautifully said. I agree with you, we had already arrived at our hotel for the concert the day Ruud was taken ill and yes we were disappointed but not one of us would have expected any of them to be up to performing.

  • I have wanted to see Andre Rieu and his Orchestra for some time since discovering them on YouTube and was sadened to learn of recent events in the UK.

    It is refreshing to learn that in a world where profit is king, humanity, support and kindness for a colleague triumphs especially at this time of year.

    I now want to see this remarkable orchestra even more. I wish Rudd? a full recovery and the Orchestra comfort at this troubling time.

  • My Sister and I were booked to see the show at Manchester and of course, we were upset at missing the show, but I cannot imagine a ‘fun’ show like Andre’s going on, when the orchestra member was so poorly. They are like a huge family. Having since heard of the sad news of the members death, I can only again reiterate that it was the right thing to do. Unfortunately, we cannot make the rescheduled date, but will look forward to seeing the concert next Xmas and until then, I will get my ‘fix’ by listening to CD’s and watching the concerts on the Arts Channel. Our thoughts are with the family and the orchestra at this sad, sad time.

  • I am truly saddened to learn of Andre Rieu’s cherished Trombonist, Ruud’s passing, and offer my deepest condolences to Ruud’s Family and Orchestral
    Family with his admired and fidel friend, Andre Rieu, at his side …

    As posted earlier above, I’ve experienced Great loss — that of my beloved father who was my principle violin teacher which propelled me straight into the First International Violin Master Class of Jascha Heifetz at USC ~ The concerts which were booked a year or more in advance of my irreplaceable loss, & were for me to perform Aram Khachaturian’s Violin Concerto which Poppa had taught to me, and on the same day as my father was laid to his final rest, was all too much to cope with, & my Concert Artist Manager sent a kind note & phone call to the Orchestra here in America, whom had engaged me as their violin soloist. It was a dreadful time, and would have not lifted the audience Up as my heart & musical world was shattered ~ Andre Rieu’s humanity lifts him into a rare league of human beings for whom I give thanks and gratitude ~ His decision in sync with all in his orchestral Family was, unquestionably, the right and humane choice … Those who are obviously disappointed, I’ve got a feeling, will receive a gesture of kindness from Mr. Rieu and his Orchestra at the ‘right’ time …

    My heartfelt sympathies to the entire Rieu musical family of Ruud who will be offering their on going moral support and love to comfort those grieving dear one’s of Ruud. May he rest in peace with choirs of God’s ‘Trombone Angels’ …

    From America ~

    Elisabeth ‘M.’

    • Dearest Elizabeth,

      I am in Australia and like you lost my Dad at a time when he was getting me to elevate my playing of the piano to a level nearly ready to go to the Conservatorium exams in Melbourne Australia. Unbelievably, he died suddenly when I turned 9. His mother (my Nana), who continued training and coaching me, after his death was too much for me to bear. Everytime I was corrected or asked to repeat a scale, I remember looking sideways up at her and just hopelessly linging to see my dad’s face and not hers. I lived her dearly so dearly because she was my nan and I knew everyone was trying to help me fulfill my potential. But I just couldn’t play and I ceased my practice.

      I still, 40 yrs on, have Dad’s piano in my house( which I am now warming up to having tuned), finally.

      So the reason for the story is to iterate how I know Andre simply didn’t have a choice. He was broken as was Ruud’s immediate and orchestral family in the JSO!!

      Peace will take over in time but it will be forever, that Ruud’s absence will make hearts yearn. Theough my yearning and I am sure through your own very sadness you have deepened, felt more and become better at coping with the realties and often tragic side of life.

      I wanted to thank you for your post and again pray for all those so dearly blessed by having known Ruud. Blessing especiall to his beautiful 2 young children and ofcourse to Lin his beloved partner in life and love!

      Love from Janet Lee Taylor
      South Yarra
      Melbourne ,
      Vic Aus

  • Not sure if this is the correct place to post. I have been looking to see if Andre will be returning this year to Pensacola Florida. I did see he will be in South Florida. Hoping he will add Pensacola to his tour this year. Our family would LOVE to be able to see him perform again. Thank you for any reply.

  • so very sad, i will always remember that trombone balanced by rudd and also his wonderful hair. to his whole ‘family’ I am as sad as you for the passing of this wonderful musician.

  • In one paragraph it states that andre rieu had a heart attack and then another says one of his members. Who was it that had the heart attack..

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