Piazza della musica
On my return to Austria in 2002 we took my inspiration from ‘Wallmans Salon show restaurant’ in Sweden to combine my experience of gastronomy which I gained from running my own chain of restaurants ten years previously. With my three partners and my passion for music I created a place with Mediterranean ambiance and made a patent on the name “Piazza della musica”. Amazing architecture, serving good food with great service to show guests live music and dance shows by giving our clientele the feeling that they sat outside in an Italian Piazza, although they were actually sitting inside.
With 4 million Euro’s we built a completely new building giving seating and eating space for 500 people allowing a clear view to the stage. I made a small scale model of the building and handed the artwork over to an Architect to make the final drawings, so the project got approved by the authorities. We found a construction company that built the main structure of 980 m2 with a gallery on the first floor and a big stage. Two forty meter long bars gave place for another one-hundred-and-twenty people to view the show from the bar, one at the entrance and one at the rear.
The outside of the building was made to look like a ‘Roman Temple’ and after passing the entrance area with an alley way which we called ‘Vicolo dolcissimo’ meaning the sweet alley in Italian where we displayed our deserts and patisseries. Our guests had the view of a large Italian Piazza with sixteen different house facades, which was made from Stucco. The interior architecture made of 160 metric tons of stucco gave the impression to be outside in Italy, even the light-show on the house facades with five thousand stars painted on the ceiling with fluorescent colour gave the guests the feeling to be under the starry night sky of Italy.
For the forty meter long tympanum of the temple a three meter high relief of sculptures was carried by six large columns. Our Choreographer Alberto Nunez joined us exactly one year before opening when the construction company started to raise the building. At this point we started to create the shows along with my good friend ‘John Morado’ one of Austria’s great Dj’s. The next step was to find musicians that were as passionate about performing as they were about serving good food and drinks. We advertised in the media with a call for casting. Which we called ‘A search for voice and movement!
One month after selecting almost a hundred candidates from all the applications we cast thirty strong individuals. We felt very lucky having found Singers for classic, jazz, rock and pop-songs and a talented lady Saxophonist as well as a Flamenco Guitarist. On 9th October 2003 we opened ‘Piazza della Musica’ with a big boom in the media as the national TV Station ORF filmed our opening night which was shown nationwide at peak viewing time.
In the coming year we hired many more musically talented artists. Giving a wider variety of Musicians to choose from for each show. Three months after we started we decided to include some comic parts to the shows along with a contortionist that made a fantastic trapeze performance. We created many magical moments between our guests and performers. After three very successful years of being a Partner and Musical Director at ‘Piazza della Musica’ a new opportunity was presented to further advance my career.