Last night was fantastic. Well, actually let me get this straight first.
I am so happy we took Troy to see Andre Rieu. He enjoyed it with all his heart. We enjoyed being there with him and seeing him taking in every bit of that music.
Back on New Year’s Day when PBS ran Andre Rieu’s Vienna show and Troy was so excited to see it, I thought: “He is great. Definitely more of a showman and less of a music freak than I like it, but just great for Troy – I definitely want to take him!” Then my husband stepped in with his talent of getting awesome deals on everything and before we knew it, June 20th was here and we found ourselves in the best orchestra seats ever!
A kid of my son’s age (he is turning 17 months old this week) has to have a little draw when it comes to watching a live show. Like a picture in a book, you know? Something to illustrate what he hears. A hook that he could mentally grab onto. A kid of his age does not really care if a tenor sounds flawless or makes a very bad mistake. As long as there is gorgeous live music, the kid is in. Now to this add fancy lightening, ballroom (a bit cheap looking, but who really cares?) dresses of all possible colors, and most importantly all those real instruments and live music.
Troy was really excited to go. We talked about the show every once in a while, just a little. I showed him how Andre Rieu would be playing the violin and he would lift his arms and wave them to imitate that. Did not look anything like it should have, so what? And then I would ask him how he would be clapping and he would clap and smile.
The show started at 6 p.m. and I can proudly report that I did get to keep Troy rested, because he had a good nap and woke up at 5 p.m.!!! During the whole first part of the show Troy was very alert, focused and happy. He behaved exceptionally well. He listened, watched, clapped and smiled. No whining, no crying, no kicking. I was so proud of him.
During the second part of the show he was still behaving very well, but of course was much more tired, even though still very focused.
At the end of the show, Andre Rieu announced that he was going to play the Blue Danube, the waltz that raises all audiences to their feet and that he was curious what would happen in Baltimore. Thanks to one of my readers, I knew that people dance on Mr. Rieu’s shows, so I thought “If one couple goes, Troy and I will go too”. So one couple started waltzing and so did we.
I have to say that Troy loves waltzing (while I am holding him in my arms, of course). We have been practicing for almost a year now. He holds up just like a ballroom dancer, steady arms, straight back, head turned to side just a bit. So going out and starting waltzing all the way down the aisle was nothing out of the common way for us. The great part about it was that my husband filmed the whole thing and I have to tell you that it looks really good and pretty unique! Troy and I are waltzing with Andre Rieu playing just steps away. How nice is that? More and more couples were dancing in the aisles: husbands and wives, girlfriends and boyfriends, mothers and kids, and just friends.
People really liked Troy. Several commented that we danced so well and somebody said “You have a fantastic kid!”
At the end of the show balloons of all colors were tossed into the orchestra and all kids were there to pick them up. Troy got 2 and was very happy.
Of course, he was really tired, but my husband and I both agreed that we did the right thing to take him to the show. He truly enjoyed it and got so much out of it.
There certainly was a number of things that I mentally started picking on right away and I did write them here and then… just deleted them. Why do I always have to be so critical? That’s right – because I take music seriously and because I go for nothing less than the best.
I am not happy with cheesy, eclectic,I do not acknowledge the existence of the second best and have a hard time enjoying singing with bad mistakes. But you know what? Not today. I am taking a break in appreciation of the gift of the wonderful music that Andre Rieu did give to my son and the fabulous time that we all had last night.
Would I recommend my readers to go see Andre Rieu on their own? Depending on what you are looking for in music. Would I recommend my readers to take their little ones to see Andre Rieu? Definitely YES!
Edited to add: Besides the beautiful Viennese waltzes, the program also included highlights from operettas by Lehar (The Merry Widow), Kalman (Silva), and Strauss (Zigeunerbaron), which was just great because Troy is very familiar with those melodies. For him it was a live encounter with the music that he heard on a CD so many times.
Also, this afternoon I purchased this DVD. This is exactly the program that Troy watched on New Year's Day. However, now, hopefully, it will be even more significant to him, because he will recognize Andre Rieu whom he saw live and as close as just steps away!
This DVD is very nice because it was filmed in Vienna and features a lot of ballroom dancing.