In the department of Where Do You Begin To Ask Questions, the wildly popular Dutch violinist and bandleader Andre Rieu is touring with a waltz by Anthony Hopkins. There they are pictured together at left. The waltz is reportedly front and center on Rieu's new CD.
I did not know Anthony Hopkins was a composer! But he was -- and is, it seems. Rieu discusses him on his Web site. He writes: "We were all inspired by Sir Hopkins' beautiful music."
Having not heard Rieu's new CD -- and Rieu is not coming to Buffalo until Nov. 21 -- I looked high and low trying to get a sneak preview of this waltz. Darn, I could not.
But I did find this YouTube interview, which took place in April, in which Hopkins talks about how he used to compose a lot of music. He is a big Andre Rieu fan and had "this vision, this dream" that Rieu could perform some of his music. So he wrote and orchestrated a waltz. Rieu, he says, "embellished" it.
The interviewer asks how it sounds. "Fantastic!" Hopkins exclaims. "It's a beautiful arrangement, a beautiful sound," he adds, graciously giving all the credit to Rieu.
What a charmer! You cannot beat Hopkins as he talks modestly about how he plays the piano, "but I'm not a concert pianist." He says he plays the piano every day. He describes his waltz as "rather Viennese, central European. ... I wrote a lot of music, 40 years ago, 50 years ago."
Might he write more music in the future?
Hopkins says, "I have several more waltzes I'm going to send him when I go back to Los Angeles this week."
"So we can expect a whole album of your music by Andre Rieu?" the interviewer kids.
"You never know. I hope so! It'd be lovely."
-- Mary Kunz Goldman
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