Johann Strauss Orchestra ~ Renate Dirix

Renate Dirix

Johann Strauss Orchestra: Saxophone, Bassoon, and Vocals


Having studied Saxophone at the Conservatory of Music in Maastricht for 3 years, Renate switched studies after learning Andre Rieu was in need of a Bassoon Player. We are all the luckier for it! Playing the Saxophone, Bassoon, Singing and Laughing are all trademarks of Renate Dirix.

Renate quickly became one of the many popular members of the Johann Strauss Orchestra. We sang along as she played saxophone and bassoon with the orchestra and we laughed at her antics onstage. One of the best performances and a must-see is 'Tirolrock' on the DVD, Andre Rieu ~ Gala Concert. It is great fun as Manoe sings 'Rock Around The Clock' while Andre & the JSO start to play another tune. We can see the dislike coming over Renate as she scolds the brass section for backing up Manoe. Next as Andre Plays, Renate breaks into 'Heidi' encouraging the cheering crowd into singing with her. All is well when Andre, Manoe and Renate join in the chorus, now being sung by all as the crowd dances and the JSO brings down the house.

Renate is also featured as one of the Andre Sisters on Live at the Royal Albert Hall as well as showing a more serious side on, 'Aimer' on the DVD, Dreaming, featuring Andre, Renate and Tanja Derwahl

Renate toured for 12 years with Andre Rieu & the Johann Strauss Orchestra.

Today we find Renate with her newest venture:

Riencarnatus! The Medieval Music Theatre!

Riencarnatus is the creation of Joyce Hamers and Renate Dirix. (Joyce Hamers, audiovisual specialist formerly of Andre Rieu Studios) This is an interesting and entertaining group of women. They bring to life the music and instruments of the medieval times. Entertaining, Educating and always Fun! has been fortunate enough to interview Renate for our website!
Please tell us a little about Riencarnatus, The Medieval Music Theatre!

Renate Dirix:
All my life I have been very interested in medieval history and it’s music. Although for most people the medieval music is unknown. Spending many years of my life with Andre I saw what he did to the classical music. With Riencarnatus we will do much the same with medieval music as Andre did with classical music. Of course not in the same way, that would be impossible because the music is a lot different.
And what about the music?

Renate Dirix:
Mostly the medieval musical arrangements as we know them are very dull and not exciting at all.

We (Riencarnatus) believe that the medieval music is not boring at all! That is why we do this in a new way, bringing music which is so old, back to a fresh life!

We do not just play the music in a traditional way … we are developing a complete new view on medieval music ... I may not say too much of it so I will only tease you a bit for right now, but believe me; no one has ever before done this to medieval music!
I have seen the costumes in photos and on your website of the Female Troubadours. They are so beautiful. Does each Riencarnatus member have their own 'identity' and costume?

Renate Dirix:
Not really … the costumes we have are specially made for Riencarnatus because (just like Andre) people want to see something special on stage and that is true, black suites and dresses are not exciting to look at a whole evening. So we decided to make nice medieval costumes because the dresses of that time were very beautiful!
What is the concert like for the audience? What can we expect and maybe not expect, but find?

Renate Dirix:
The concert is a mix of acts and playing the music. We have a life- size castle décor and in our first show we will give the audience a general view on medieval times. In later shows we will do special subjects like: witches and witchcraft or medieval heroes and so on.

There is a difference between playing a theatre show or playing at festivals. On festivals we only play traditional and we will not have our décor because mostly the performances are not a whole evening. In a theatre-show we play traditional and after the break we will demonstrate as modern female troubadours what else you can do with medieval music and we will mix it with modern instruments!
I am certain the following of fans you developed while with Andre Rieu and the Johann Strauss Orchestra cannot wait to join your new fan base and see you with Riencarnatus

Thank you so kindly for taking the time in your busy schedule for this interview for!

Renate Dirix
Thank you and groetjes

or more information on Renate click here ~~>   


information provided by
Sally Chaney