About this item
Telecast concerts by André Rieu have served the U.S. Public Broadcasting System so well as fundraisers that this album, as well as others by the Dutch violinist, now bear a big red starburst with the words "As Seen on Public Television." The synergy grows ever closer, with the booklet for this release, as well as an accompanying DVD, consisting largely of clips of and advertisements for other live concerts that, presumably, will serve as future PBS specials. Be that as it may, this is one of the better Rieu releases since his classical hitmaking machine kicked into high gear. Listeners new to the Rieu phenomenon, in fact, might wish to choose this disc first, for the program, recorded live at Vienna's Hofburg Palace, sticks close to the Strauss waltzes and vocal numbers that launched Rieu's career in the late '70s and 1980s; his later recordings have tended toward becoming large extravaganzas with heavy admixtures of American pop elements. Some people love Rieu and others detest him, but with this album he can claim to live up to the booklet blurb alleging that the music "will transport you back in time to the romantic Vienna of the nineteenth century" Operetta numbers are carefully balanced against waltzes in such a way that the vocal soloists, who aren't even thoroughly identified, become mere foils for Rieu's violin. Vienna being the locale, Mozart is added to the mix, and a pair of bonus tracks comes at the end: On the Beautiful Blue Danube, held as an encore in rock-concert fashion, and The Sound of Music, which gives you an idea of how artificial and yet how uncannily effective the entire conception is. Those who are a bit overwhelmed by Rieu's American-style extravaganzas will find the simplicity of this program to their liking, and Denon's live sound engineering just gets better and better. James Manheim, All Music Guide
Record label: Savoy jazz,Fontana
Musical Artist: Andre rieu
Software Format: CD
Street Date: September 30, 2008
Item Number (DPCI): 244-00-5607
If the item details above aren’t accurate or complete, we want to know about it. Report incorrect product info.