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Chapter II

The orchestra begins working (again) with younger, unknown musicians, while a core of old members remains. Klaus Dickbauer, Florian Bramböck Thomas Alkier, Joseph Bowie and Alexandra Naumann join the band. European tour with concerts in Sweden, Norway, Spain, France, Czechoslovakia, Germany and Austria. Lighting effects are added for the first time. The band has fun again and plays "full power". Other tours feature the programs "Fe& Males" (televised in Vienna and Leverkusen) and "lieber ein saxophon" with Ernst Jandl.

No break with the traditions of the orchestra and yet, they are audibly refreshed. (Weltwoche, Zürich)

Favorite subject of discussion: Tax law.

Program Folder


Mozart’s Balls

VAO takes one year off as a jazz orchestra from touring. Rüegg is invited by Switzerland to write a program for the specially-created Swiss Art Orchestra, in which nearly all mayor Swiss jazz musicians participate. Production with the BBC of a 30-minute music film entitled "N_t M_zart," which is picked up by several European TV stations. In France, a recording session and tour with "Fe & Males".

An energetic life-sign from a band which often, unjustly, has been declared for dead. (Standard, Vienna)

Favorite subject of discussion: The past.

Swiss Art Orchestra



For the first time, rüegg contracts out all compositions for the new program (to Uli Scherer, Werner Pirchner, Wolfgang Puschnig, Daniel Snyder, Florian Bramböck). Corin Curschellas, Danilo Terenzi, Matthieu Michel and Claudio Pontiggia join the orchestra.Two European tours (EXPO Sevilla, festivals in Helsinki and Utrecht, a.o.). Comissions by the Donaufestival and the Banlieues Bleues (Paris) and Jazz at Trento result in the production "La belle et la bête", an homage to Jean Cocteau.

Was this an encore with an ironic twist for an otherwise ponderous concert? A reminiscence of their wild beginnings? Or perhaps simply a sucessful linkage of their experimental spirit with the pleasure they take in playing, which has not diminished after 15 years of work in the realm of sound. (Süddeutsche Zeitung, Munich)

Favorite subject of discussion: Getting up in the morning.