Dutch violinist/conductor/composer Andre Rieu, who has popularized the waltz through his concerts presented by PBS-TV during fund raisers, has already sold 300,000 tickets for 2009. In 2008 he moved 714,617 tickets and had a gross revenue of $76.9 million, placing at the number eight position in Pollstar’s top 10 chart of worldwide touring acts–in between the Eagles and Kenny Chesney. The average of 10,065 tickets sold per concert is the highest a classical artist has ever placed in the Pollstar Chart.

His success was driven by strong ticket sales in Europe and Australia for his World Stadium Tour–extravaganza with a full size reproduction of Empress Sisi’s Castle, the biggest stage ever to go on tour.

“The USA is next on the list,” Rieu, 59, said in a statement. “It’s my goal to tour the States with the Schonbrunn Castle. The success there hasn’t kept up with the success in Europe, Asia and Australia, and we’re going to do everything possible to conquer the USA and sell out football stadiums.”

He has 35 North American dates booked from April 17 through June 25 performing in arenas, theatres and ballrooms. He also plans to tour Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, France, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium and, of course, his home country the Netherlands.

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