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Wien, Vienna, Austria | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | INDIE

Wien, Vienna, Austria | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2014
Band World Adult Contemporary


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Massive Waves made by a Sound"

„Massive waves made by a sound. Journeys with Hubert von Goisern, Tango, Classical, Jazz, Pop: Die Donauwellenreiter incorporate the impossible... The Danube does not pass through Mexico nor does it pass through South-Tyrol ... but that is irrelevant. For the talents of a genuine Donauwellenreiter also embrace the capacity to elegantly surf across geografical and musical distances." - Salzburger Nachrichten

"Tango, Balkan and Minimal Music"

"Second-by-second alternations between Tango, Balkan and Minimal Music, Klezmer, Jazz and Latin, the contemplative, the disturbing, the danceable are assembled into a homogeneous whole." - ORF Ö1 Diagonal

"Three Person Chamber Orchestra"

"Donauwellenreiter... appear as a three-person chamber orchestra that takes up local music traditions and transfers them into solid and transparenly arranged art songs - somtimes sung in Tyrolean, sometimes in Ladin, sometimes in Serbian - without ever seeming pretentious." - Falter

"The Name reflects the Title"

"The debut album ranges somewhere between Minimal, Pop, World and improvised music, artistically clearly reaching far beyond any genre limits. The name reflects the programme and it works in a fascinating way." -


2014 Messei (Intuition Records)
2012 Annherung (4tm/Hoanzl)



"What Donauwellenreiter serve up on their new, second album is simply incredible, incredible because there is no pigeonhole for these songs and any classification would have to fail. But also: simply incredibly beautiful. A unique, distinctive sound, music as it could perhaps only be created in Vienna, this multiethnic city, the bridge between Eastern and Western Europe and the living proof that cultural uniformity is a dead end and that diversity can result in exhilarating moments in art." (Volker Dueck, Intuition Records)

Donauwellenreiter ("Danube Surfers") are one of the most exciting projects in Vienna today. Tango and Minimal Music, Pop and Jazz, Serbian and Ladin constitute the great compact drifting of the trio's distinctive sound: The emotional, powerful voice of singer Maria Craffonara, who also enthuses with flawless violin sounds when required; the virtuoso on the keys Thomas Castaeda, who often conceals his technical brilliance behind wondrous, touching melodies; and  accordionist Nikola Zari, who creates sounds that you can hardly believe come from this instrument.

Although Donauwellenreiter formed in 2010, they are already among the shooting stars of the Austrian music scene and regularly featured at international festivals and concert series such as Internationales Jazzfestival Saalfelden, Outreach Jazzfestival Schwaz, Internationales Akkordeonfestival Wien, Worldmusic Festival Bozen, Jazz around the World Munich. Among the former highlights rank the opening of the "Langen Nacht der Museen" at the Potsdam Square in Berlin ( 2011), as well as the premiere of the commissioned piece  "High Fidelity" at the State Museum Ferdinandeum in Innsbruck ( 2011). "Annherung" (approximation),  their much praised debut album was  released  in 2012,  the second album "Messei" followed in April 2014 on the German label Intuition Records and will be presented in numerous upcoming live concerts in Europe and beyond. Donauwellenreiter are part of The New Austrian Sound of Music, the support program of The Austrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The composer and pianist of the trio Thomas Castaeda is Tyrolean but has Mexican roots, as his name betrays. As a young self-taught musician, he went to Vienna and played in various rock and pop bands. He has refined his playing over the years, and above all he discovered his talent for composing: the basis for the success of Donauwellenreiter.

Maria Craffonara from northern Italy is not only remarkable on instruments (she studied violin and piano) and with her voice (classic education at the Mozarteum in Salzburg), but also linguistically. She speaks Ladin, a language that is only spoken by few people in her native region, the Dolomite Mountains (and also in Friuli and the Swiss Grissons). The name of the CD also comes from Ladin: Messi means "must". In addition to Maria's great musical variety, her linguistic variety helps set the tone of the music for the trio.

Accordionist Nikola Zari, born in Vienna as the son of Serbian parents, was already filled with enthusiasm for the accordion as a small child and has played it since he was seven years old. He underwent academic training at Franz Schubert Conservatory in Vienna. He has attracted public attention thanks to numerous prizes won at international competition in Austria, Italy, Serbia, etc.

Line up:
Thomas Castaneda - piano, keyboard
Maria Craffonara  - voice, violin, percussion
Nikola Zaric - accordion



Band Members