André Rieu and his Johann Strauss Orchestra at the Grand West Arena

“Do you want to see a concert by André Rieu this evening?”

“Eh? Seriously?”

“Yep, we have two extra tickets.”


Look where we are! At a concert with André Rieu and his Johann Strauss Orchestra

Now THAT was a serendipitous surprise phone call to receive on a Sunday morning, don’t you think? I had seen the posters advertising the performance by world-famous classical violinist André Rieu and his Johann Strauss Orchestra at the Grand West Arena – but with tickets ranging from R400 to R1050, I hadn’t really given this much serious thought.

We met up with our friends, Johan and Isabella, for a bite to eat at the Spur before the show. Shortly before 18h00, we took our seats – and what seats these were! Right in the central block, slightly above ground level, so we had the most fabulous view of the stage, and of the two large screens on either side.

I am pinching myself - this is REAL! He is right here in Cape Town!!


Mom-in-law is a huge fan of André Rieu, and had told us all about his concert at the Island of Mainau in Germany last year. But all her descriptions had not prepared me for such a wonderful, uplifting, heart-stirring and delightfully entertaining experience.

The combination of beautiful women and handsome men, the lovely dresses and gorgeous suits, the perfect-looking hair and make-up, the stage-setting and the stunningly painted backdrops, together with such marvellous music played with both passion and lightness, they transported all of us to an entirely different time: a time of ‘old-fashioned’ values and morals, a time where charm and good humour, style and elegance reigned, a time of exquisitely attired ladies and gentlemen… oh, and music… wow… such music…

The audience is warmed up now - and we give one standing ovation after another

They played numerous waltzes, including the “Schlittschuhläufer” (Ice-skaters), the “Blue Danube”, and “Wiener Blut”, but also the “Amboss Polka” and the “Radetzky March”. The pianist entranced us with the romantic “Ballade for Adeline”; the three Platinum Tenors wowed us with their powerful voices; and South African singer Kimmy Skota impressed us with her crystal clear soprano.

There was even a surprise performance by James Bhemghee, winner of SA’s Got Talent, who lent a South African flavour to the performance by singing, among others, “Sarie Marais”.

That's our flag!! 🙂

Although ALL the pieces were stunning, the one I thought was the most impressive piece was the “Hallelujah Chorus”, which almost literally raised the roof!

This piece is simply fabulous! Definitely one of the highlights of the evening!

We demanded encore after encore, clapping our hands, stamping our feet, yelling with all our might, and even waving the South African flag. It was only after he had played “Guten Abend, Gut Nacht”, against a night-time backdrop of the moon and the stars, that the audience finally got to their feet to leave.

Even this show must come to an end eventually - and so it does with 'Guten Abend, Gut Nacht'...

We were on such a heavenly cloud, that we didn’t want the evening to end yet. So we returned to the Spur for hot chocolates and waffles with ice-cream. What a fantastic evening this had been!

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P.S. Many of the photos in this slideshow were taken by our friends – thank you for allowing me to put them up on my blog!

10 thoughts on “André Rieu and his Johann Strauss Orchestra at the Grand West Arena

  1. Hi Reggie, price and date of tickets please??? I can forward your e-mail to my friends. Enjoy this splendid evening and thanks for your lovely blog!!! Lindsey

  2. WOW what a wonderful evening you had! You can’t beat seeing live music – and especially performed by such professionals! 😉 Fab photos too.

    And that hot chocolate night-cap? Well, sounds like the perfect ending to a perfect night! x

    • I know, I know! 😀 The performance was just rock-your-socks-off awesome, and I haven’t had a hot chocolate in… um… well… I can’t even remember! Yep, a perfect evening.

  3. Last evening I saw on TV “The African Dream” from Andre Rieu – when he was in Cape Town last year in May 2010.

    I must say when I heard ‘Kimi’ singing the Ave Maria I had to shed a tear – she has a wonderful clear voice.

    I also must admit when I saw your pictures of Andre I don’t think words can express how you felt that evening, but I think I know how you felt because when I have seen him live on stage in Germany on the “Insel Mainau” I was also taken into heaven that is how beautiful it was and is every time you hear or see him on TV or especially ‘live’ like you did this time and myself last year.

    You probably agree with me – this experience will live in and with you for a long long time and every time you hear a CD or see him on TV (like I do – I have already 4 shows recorded ; Andre Rieu in New York, in Sydney, in Maastrich and last year in Cape Town and saw him live in Germany), you relive the wonderful ‘Highlight of the year’ everytime anew.

    I am so happy for both of you that you had the wonderful oppertunity and experience to see Andre Rieu.


    • Aw, thank you so much, Lissi. And I completely and wholeheartedly agree with you. Until I saw him live, I hadn’t fully realised why he has such a loyal following of fans. But now, I really do. 😀

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