Posts Tagged ‘Vienna’

Michael Jackson tribute event in Vienna: Cancelled!

Michael Jackson tribute is not going to happen in Vienna

MJ tribute is not going to happen in Vienna and he probably wouldn't care

I pity all those guys who bought tickets, which cost from 63 to 518 euros, to see the Michael Jackson tribute in Schloss Schönbrunn in Vienna. After it was announced, big names in music biz started to came up. Madonna, U2, Stevie Wonder. Guess what? It won’t happen anytime soon.

On Tuesday the producer George Kindel and Jermaine Jackson initially presented “some of the artists” (13 so far). Michael’s brother and initiator, Jermaine, felt insulted that the Austrian media dubbed these artists as B-listers. On the other hand, Mr. Kindel claimed that he and his business partner didn’t name any names and it was the Austrian media that invented the famous musicians. Grammy winner Mary J. Blige huge in Vienna? In the US, perhaps. And Chris Brown? Isn’t this guy in trouble now after he has been accused of punching his girlfriend Rihanna a few months ago? Natalie Cole found the whole thing iffy.

In fact, it is indeed iffy. On the first day it was conceptualised, commerce and pure marketing were clearly plastered on this event. It was a vehicle for Michael’s brother and some people to make money. It was not love and respect that drove them to do this. And I wonder why Vienna? “Michael loves castles and his music is majestic” was the reason they gave. And I thought of massice traffic, and thousands of promotion for the city. But does Vienna really need this?

It turns out it is already cancelled. The place might not be anymore in Vienna, but Jermaine determined to push it through in London: “We will hold the concert in the city that he himself chose for his comeback concerts but, due to his tragic death, he was not able to do.”

Vice Mayor Renate Brauner pledged to finance the event 600,000 euros, yes, that’s your and my money. Though today she and her people from the Wiener Tourismus stated that not a single cent flowed into the event.

Are you disappointed that the MJ tribute is not going to transpire in Vienna on Sept. 26?

Ladies’ Day at the KHM

For all of you gratis fans out there. The Kunsthistorisches Museum is exclusively inviting all women on August 6. Throughout the day the women are privileged to pay only half of the ticket price, that’s 5 euros, starting at 10 am. And beginning at 6 pm, everyone can enter for free! The museum is open until 9 pm. Flowers will be given away for the female visitors.

This is to coincide the exhibit “sinnlich, weiblich, flämisch – Frauenbilder rund um Rubens” under the Intermezzo project held at Hall VIII. A special tour concerning the exhibit is also slated, for free.

At 6:30 pm a podium discussion will tackle the theme “Das Bild von einer Frau–was ist das Prinzip Weiblichkeit?” with the prominent guest, the Secretary on Women Gabriele Heinisch-Hosek.

Programm-Highlights im Überblick:

ab 10 Uhr halber Eintrittspreis für alle Besucherinnen des Kunsthistorischen Museums

13 Uhr Führung durch die Ausstellung „… sinnlich, weiblich, flämisch“ (Saal VIII)

15 Uhr Sonderführung durch die Ausstellung „… sinnlich, weiblich, flämisch“ (Saal VIII) mit Kuratorin Gerlinde Gruber

16 Uhr Performative Installation mit Fanni Futterknecht und Valerie Oberleithner (Saal VIII) mit Unterstützung von Impulstanz

17 Uhr Führung durch die Ausstellung „… sinnlich, weiblich, flämisch“ (Saal VIII)

ab 18 Uhr freier Eintritt für alle Besucherinnen und Besucher

18.30 Uhr Talk-Runde „Das Bild von einer Frau – was ist das Prinzip Weiblichkeit?“ (Saal VIII)

Teilnehmer: Generaldirektorin Sabine Haag, Frauenministerin Gabriele Heinisch-Hosek, Tänzer Michael Birkmeyer
Moderation: Erna Cuesta

Natalia Ushakova, Opernsängerin
Inge Kuhn, Flötistin

Chain of Lights or Lichterkette

Lichterkette am 18 Juni, 19 Uhr

Lichterkette am 18 Juni, 19 Uhr

If you live in Vienna, or if you happen to be in the city on June 18, perhaps you would like to drop by and join. There will be a protest against the growing problem of racist activities in the city, or Austria, for that matter–from the politics, the media and the society.

Two students initiated this event. From their website, it says:

Austria 2009: Election campaigns with rabble-rousing posters at every turn.
Selective misinformation by political parties and several media. Extrem right-wing fraternity members in important functions and institutions.Assaults on victims of concentration camps… all this is ordinary
… Ordinary? It doesn’t help to worry about.
We don’t think that contempt for mankind and discrimination would be ordinary. Let us point the way:
PRO respectful coexistence
PRO humane treatment for all
PRO joy at diversity instead of isolation in simplicity
PRO civil courage instead of averting our eyes
PRO fair discussion instead of mendacious propaganda
with a PROtest campaign followed by a chain of lights round the parliament on
June 18th at 7 p.m. There will be a programme with music groups and speeches, followed by the encirclement of the parliament. We will provide torches.

If you have a Facebook account, visit their Events page and be counted as one of the protesters.

Just another victim

As the story of Mike Brennan unfolds, which I am pretty sure you know very well by now, I have the strangest feeling that if you are  a foreigner in this country who is not from the USA, the UK, etc.,  you are f*cked. Seriously.

Just by looking at the number of victims before Mr. Brennan, they shared the same thing–they were all black and all of them came from Africa. Their voices were too low for the whole society to hear. Though Mr. Brennan’s case has created a buzz surrounding this awful incident, the Viennese Police’s “apology” is half-hearted.

The simple question “Is there racism in Viennese Police” from last week’s “Club 2” was left unanswered by the head of the police. Instead we heard propaganda and beating-around-the bush declarations that they are doing their best to combat it. True, they are doing their job but why they cannot accept is that there are bad apples in the force and somehow racism exists in the structure.

Someone told me I would have a difficulty if I were an African woman. Hearing it was not easy to digest but I understood where he was coming from.  I believed him. It is not easy to be a black person in Austria. It is not easy to be a black person in the US. It is not easy to be a black person in Asia.

But over the years, I’ve been seeing a pattern on how Blacks and Latinos are portrayed in the world of videogames and Japanese animation.

The pattern that I had noticed where how Blacks were portrayed and it carried onto other fighting games. Blacks were usually portrayed as brainless boxers and wrestlers. To add a bit of diversity there were Blacks portrayed as kickboxers and capioerists. But that got pretty old after awhile, yet the Japanese still continued to portray Blacks in that fashion. That was how they stereotyped Blacks.

And if we believe the Biber article that came out weeks ago, the blacks belong at the bottom  of the ethnic hierarchy of Ausländer in Vienna.

Wieder mal die beliebte „Neger raus“-Schmiererei in der U-Bahn entdeckt? Wenn ja,  muss der „Autor“ dieser Kritzelei nicht unbedingt ein „echter“ Österreicher sein. Bei den Jugos und Türken sind die Schwarzen in der „ethnischen Hierarchie“ ganz unten angesiedelt. „Der Schwarze“ lebt ohne Papiere hier, Asylstatus abgelaufen. Er dealt mit Drogen aller Art, am Urban Loritz Platz, vorm Flex und am Karlsplatz. Sonst sitzt ist er mit seiner Gang im Volksgarten, raucht einen Ofen und macht fette Schwaboweiber an. Aufenthaltsvisum gegen Riesenschwanz, da kriegt jeder was er will.

Could it happen to Barack Obama too? Haderer has the answer. (Link via Biber)

Police brutality and Barack Obama

Welttag 2009

Somewhere in Neuer Markt

It  is a good day to go for a walk today. That is if you have nothing to do and you don’t know what to do. It is funny to look at the building snow hills in front of your neighbours’ roofs while sipping your tea but perhaps going for a stroll and listening to the Vienna guides is way much better to spend your weekend.

Welttag 2009 offers free guides and lectures about Hofburg and Albertina. The history of the Habsburgs dominate, of course, the event. One of the topics includes a discussion on the plight of the female members of the dynasty. It is an interesting way to find out how the archduchesses and princesses reacted to their fates through historical facts. Some of them rebelled openly. While others went to seek their Christian gods.

And for the first time there will be guides in English, French and Spanish though you need to register first in order to avail this guide in your preferred language.

The program starts at 10. This is another way of learning and re-discovering Vienna don’t you think? You still have two hours to prepare.

Vapiano II For Viennese Bellies

For all Vienna gourmets – and probably gourmands as well – there is very good and tasty news. A second Vapiano store is about to open its doors to visitors. January 28. Looks like the location is supersekrit. Keepin’ ya posted.

On the one hand I am still praying it’s going to be somewhere in the 7th district (close to my apartment), but one other hand a Vapiano-proximity might have a bad impact on my monthly (limited!) budget. Yet, dining at Vapiano is affordable and most definitely part of my life as a student in Vienna.

This got you all hungry? Looking for ideas where to go in Vienna? Check out!

Update: Wien 2 turns out to be PRATERSTRASSE 24-26 . A-1020 WIEN. And guess what, a third restaurant is on its way.

Vienna Calling For A Freeze

With temperatures approaching the sub-zeros, it is an undeniable law of physics that things cool down and result in a freezed state. Due to our ability of thermoregulation largely supported by warm fluids like Punsch and Gluehwein only enjoyable in a narrow time window (The Gluehwein’sche Zeitfenster, I like to call it), we (Wieners that is) fortunately manage to get around, don’t we?

Not so on December 19.  After several actions like Freezes, Midnight Howling(s) and such have already taken place in Vienna, yet another Freeze is planned to happen on Stephansplatz (Plaza in front of Saint Stephen’s Cathedral) in the 1st district. Similar to the Grand Central Frozen initiative our fast paced life is asked to come to a sudden halt for a couple of minutes.

Several groups have been established on social networking pages (Facebook and StudiVZ groups) asking people to join happily and then to show up eventually. Not the most reliable source of information, my journalistic self complains. On discussion boards people are requesting a reschedule and claim it has to be more “of a surprise” and “flexible”. With major media having taken notice, I’m afraid this whole “Let’s have people freeze” thing isn’t going to be much of a surprise, nor is it going to be original. Yet, it might be fun.

So are you attending? Yes? No? Maybe?

Update (posted on Dec 11, 0633pm): There seems to be more information available now. I tried to sum it up for you as follows: There is a slight change of plans… The Freeze will take place on December 19 (FRI) at 0300 pm. In order to freeze at the same time, make sure your watch is in sync with the atomic clock ticking for you on There will be a loud whistle in order to mark the beginning and ending of the Freeze as well.

Land der Berge, Land der Neurotiker?

“He wanted to spare his family a shame.”

Or himself, the murderer? I wonder what he was thinking when he killed his own family brutally by ax.

The 39-year-old man, identified only as Reinhard S. by police at a news conference here, turned himself in in the early hours of Wednesday, saying: “The bodies of my dead wife and child are lying in my flat.”

Sources 1&2

According to the authorities the reason for this hideous crime is financial.

But is it only the issue of money? Nothing is known about the man except that he worked as a PR consultant, his wife a government employee. How about his relationship to his dead wife, his deceased parents and father-in-law?

In less than a month after the family drama in Amstetten Austria is again hogging the headlines with another crime such as this.

Once again, the Austrian reputation is in question. What is happening to this country? The suspect doesn’t typify the usual image of a killer. Neighbours talked about the normality of the family: middle class, the husband and wife are both academics, a growing child, a house situated in the so-called noble district, Wien Hietzing or the 13th District. The neighbours didn’t notice anything that could disturb this harmony.

Now they know that there is something wrong. Everything is only facade.

Pfingsten, Pfingsten

The “winter of our discontent” is over and thank the Gods the weather is playing along so we can enjoy a long weekend until tomorrow, Whit Monday, which is a holiday for those of us who are living in Austria, Germany or Switzerland.

Vienna has been quieter since Friday with the absence of cars in our streets. Many natives might be basking under the Italian sun right now. The Viennese might be at the Neusiedl See in Burgenland or any other Seen in Austria or Europe that has more than 25 degrees!

Coming from a strictly religious Christian country, I wonder why the Philippines doesn’t declare the Whitsunday and Monday holidays unlike the more secular German-speaking countries mentioned above.

Don’t get me wrong, I am out of the Roman Catholic fold. And like the others I have forgotten why this or that is being celebrated. But I am happy that they exist.

During my first year I was really surprised that the Austrians do observe it. I just hope that it wouldn’t get abolished like in France, Sweden or UK. I mean, I admit I really love the fact that this country enjoys its free time/days. And holidays because of the Roman Catholic Church are considered very okay.

A few hours ago watching the news channel n-tv, a giddy reporter asked a few Germans what is Pfingsten or Pentecost. Sad (well, sad?) to say, no one knew and nobody understand why it is a holiday. A few answered that it is connected to the church. That’s it.

So what do you know about the Pentecost?

According to the Catholic Encyclopedia:

A feast of the universal Church which commemorates the Descent of the Holy Ghost upon the Apostles, fifty days after the Resurrection of Christ, on the ancient Jewish festival called the “feast of weeks” or Pentecost (Exodus 34:22; Deuteronomy 16:10). Whitsunday is so called from the white garments which were worn by those who were baptised during the vigil; Pentecost (“Pfingsten” in German), is the Greek for “the fiftieth” (day after Easter).

So those of you who opted to stay in Vienna, you might have seen and/or heard the celebration of yesterday’s official opening of the new stations of U-bahn line U2.

And today you might be visiting your mums as it is also Mother’s Day. Or you could be anywhere in the city enjoying a scoop or two of Eis in any of the ice cream salons.

Or maybe you are just wrapping up the rest of the day at the Ernst Happel Stadion after stripping for Spencer Tunick.

There are lotsa exhibitions offered this month like the Wiener Bezirksfestwochen until the first week of June. It is for free, mind you.

Whatever it is, let’s enjoy this week as we are in for the nice sunny, warm days ahead.

Vienna Night Run 2008

I joined the first Vienna Night Run last year and it was fun, fun, fun!

Forty-two kilometers is just too much but 5 km is okay. I received an email that the organisers of the Vienna Night Run is already accepting participants for the upcoming event in October.

Die einzigartige Strecke führt alle Teilnehmer durch den ersten Bezirk, vorbei an Wiens schönsten Sehenswürdigkeiten und Plätzen.

Wir freuen uns, dass die Anmeldung zum ERSTE BANK VIENNA NIGHT RUN am 14. Oktober 2008 nun online auf möglich ist.
Wie schon im Vorjahr beträgt das Nenngeld € 20,00 wobei wieder € 5,00 an die Organisation “Licht für die Welt” gespendet werden.

Informationen zum Lauf:

Termin: Dienstag, 14. Oktober 2008
Ort: Wiener Rathausplatz
Start: 20.00 Uhr
Distanz: 4 km
Bewerbe: Laufen, Nordic Walken
Zeitnehmung: PENTEK timing mit Champion Chip
Strecke: Ring – Teinfaltstraße – Freyung – Hof – Tuchlauben – Petersplatz – Goldschmiedgasse – Stephansplatz- Singerstraße – Seilerstätte – Himmelpfortgasse – Hegelgasse – Schwarzenbergstraße – Kruger Straße – Augustinerstraße – Josefsplatz – Michaelerplatz – Ballhausplatz – Löwelstraße – Ring

Compared to last year the location will be in the First District. So if you are interested you can already register online.

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