Linz Europe Tour 2007-2009

10 years: a look back at the Linz Europe Tour

20th June 2017

Ten years ago it was "Anchors aweigh!" for the Linz Europe Tour as the 77m long stage barge left Wallsee with band and crew aboard. HvG and his team spent 3 months in the summer of 2007 aboard the ship, sailing the Danube from Linz to the Black Sea. Together with local artists from Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Romania, Bulgaria, Moldova and Ukraine, they gave thrilling joint concerts for the audiences on the riverbanks. This summer we'll take a look back at events along the way ...

Wallsee - Vienna

Photos: © Sarah Marchant; Helmut Graf

After leaving its home harbour of Wallsee, the first stop for the concert ship was Vienna. The opening concert of the tour was due to take place at the Donauinselfest, but after the soundcheck in afternoon, a violent storm blew through the stage, pummelling instruments and amplifiers with hail and rain. The show had to be postponed two days while emergency repairs were made. Willi Resetarits and Hohtraxlecker Sprungschanznmusi joined Hubert von Goisern for the first concert of the Linz Europe Tour on 24th June.

Hubert von GoisernWilli Resetarits und Hubert von Goisern

Melk - Regensburg - Passau

Photos: © Jonas Steckel; Elli Christl

Before heading beyond the German-speaking region, the concert ship stopped in Melk, Regensburg and Passau to give Austria and Germany a taste of the Linz Europe Tour. Hubert and his band were joined on this stretch by Willi Resetarits, Haindling and Claudia Koreck. All three concerts gave the audience a taste of the kind of collaborations at the heart of the tour, with Hubert and his band sharing the stage with the guest artist each night.

Linz Europe Tour - Danube

Linz Europe Tour - Melk

Linz Europe Tour - Regensburg

Linz Europe Tour - Passau

Osijek - Vukovar

Photos: © Jonas Steckel; Petra Hinterberger

By the third week, the Linz Europe Tour ship had sailed through Slovakia and Hungary and reached Croatia. To reach Osijek, where the musicians welcomed on board jazz singer Tamara Obrovac, the Linz Europe Tour ship left the Danube and joined the Drava river. Together Hubert and Tamara played concerts in Osijek and Vukovar, both cities with rich histories, which also still bore the scars of war in some places.

Linz Europe Tour - Osijek

Linz Europe Tour - Osijek

Linz Europe Tour - Vukovar

Linz Europe Tour - Hubert von Goisern and Tamara Obrovac

Iron Gate - Orsova - Vidin

Photos: © Petra Hinterberger

Ten years ago the Linz Europe Tour concert ship was navigating the Iron Gate, the 14.5km long gorge between Romania and Serbia. In fine weather it was possible to gather on the retracted stage roof during journeys, which afforded great views. A few days later in Orsova, Romanian pop superstar Loredana Groza came on board – one of the many artists who would return to the project for its finale two years later at the Harbour Festival in Linz.

Linz Europe Tour - Iron Gate

Linz Europe Tour - Decebalus

Linz Europe Tour - Concert in Orsova

Linz Europe Tour - Loredana Groza

Ruse - Silistra - Braila

Photos: © Petra Hinterberger

The arrival of Karandila Gypsy Brass Orchestra in Bulgaria added 15 musicians to the ship's resident band and crew for 3 concerts in 6 days. In Silistra the tour faced a challenge: since the recce, a large hotel terrace had been built over the bay in which the concert was to take place. The terrace remained closed, blocking access for the growing audience outside - the antithesis of the tour's aim to bring music to the people. So in an act of resistance the anchor was raised once more and the concert ship continued along the river, with the crowd following along the riverbank to a new unofficial site, where their enthusiasm was rewarded with a concert that went on long past midnight.

Linz Europe Tour - Rehearsal in Silistra

Linz Europe Tour - Darinka Tsekova

Linz Europe Tour - Karandila

Linz Europe Tour - Silistra

Galati - Izmail - Vylkove

Photos: © Petra Hinterberger

In the sixth week of the Linz Europe Tour ten years ago, the concert ship could be seen in Galati, Izmail and Vylkove. Two bands were on board at the same time when the ship stopped in Izmail, Ukraine: Zdob si Zdub from Moldova and Haydamaky – Ukrainian folk rockers. It made for an amazing night. "Our farewells were only bearable in that we were making plans for the future too," Hubert wrote at the time in his logbook.

Linz Europe Tour - Gifts from the town

Linz Europe Tour - Hubert von Goisern

Linz Europe Tour - Zdob si Zdub

Linz Europe Tour - Haydamaky

Linz Europe Tour - Behind the scenes

Sulina - Sfântu Gheorghe - Tulcea

Photos: © Jürgen Skarwan

At the end of July 2007 the ship reached its turning point, the Black Sea. The lighthouse at Sulina marks Kilometre 0, but nowadays the delta extends another 12 kilometres. After weeks on the river, the travellers were delighted to reach the salty water, "where it all ends and begins", as Hubert put it. As the band and crew began their long journey back to Linz, they stopped in Sulina and Sfântu Gheorghe. They were then reunited with their Moldovan friends Zdob si Zdub for a concert in Tulcea, Romania.

Linz Europe Tour - Rehearsing on the roof of the barracks ship

Linz Europe Tour - View from the stage

Linz Europe Tour - Concert in Tulcea


Photos: © Petra Hinterberger

In early August the concert ship was sailing full steam ahead to Budapest, with lots of time to enjoy life on the ship and the river - swimming, or fishing, the latter with mixed success! During the Linz Europe Tour Hubert wrote a logbook for his website, sharing the ups and downs of this unique adventure. After the three year project, Hubert's writings were published in his first book Stromlinien (Streamlines). Extracts can be found on the tour map.

Linz Europe Tour - Hubert von Goisern

Linz Europe Tour - Concert ship


Photos: © Petra Hinterberger

On 19th August the anchor was dropped in front of the Hungarian Parliament Building in Budapest. After the set from guest band Besh o droM, Hubert and his musicians played for the gathered crowd. Then just as they began their final number the heavens opened for a dramatic finale. Lightning filled the sky and wind and hail attacked the stage as everyone hurried to rescue the equipment and instruments. Fortunately, Mother Nature inflicted little damage this time!

Linz Europe Tour - Concert ship in Budapest

Linz Europe Tour - Hubert von Goisern and band in Budapest

Linz Europe Tour - Budapest

Mohacs - Belgrade - Novi Sad

Photos: © Marko Risović /

Serbian singer-songwriter Rambo Amadeus was Hubert von Goisern's musical guest in Belgrade and Novi Sad, as the mercury rose well above 40ºC on the ship. In his logbook Hubert described Rambo's set as "one of the most innovative of the tour", while local press commented on both artists' "unbreakable energy and great emotional intelligence".

Linz Europe Tour - Hubert von Goisern and Rambo Amadeus

Bratislava - Linz

Photos: © Petra Hinterberger; Elli Christl

After a stop in Bratislava, the Linz Europe Tour ship sailed back into the city of Linz on 1st September 2007, full of memories of a summer on the Danube. With the ship moored at the Donaupark a crowd of 8000 was treated to the musical pleasure of not just Hubert von Goisern and his band, but Serbian star Rambo Amadeus, Hohtraxlecker Sprungschanznmusi from Bad Ischl and Bulgarian gadulka player Darinka Tsekova too. Late into the night everyone celebrated the success of the first leg of the Linz Europe Tour.

Linz Europe Tour - Hubert von Goisern

Linz Europe Tour - Hubert von Goisern

Linz Europe Tour - Rambo Amadeus and Hubert von Goisern

Linz Europe Tour - Hubert von Goisern and Band

Linz Europe Tour - Band and Crew