We’re sooooo excited to introduce ‘The Ausländer Project.’
We’re tired of bad news and the negative vibe sticking to the word, “Ausländer,” in the mainstream media. We’re also tired of the media’s negative portrayal of the people the word refers to. We’re hoping to take the word Ausländer and make it a positive word, empower it and make people proud to own the title.
We intend to do this by featuring the stories of all kinds of characters who have (somehow) ended up in Vienna from all parts of the world.
After all, we’re all Ausländer somehow, right?
Scroll down to get to know our first Ausländer, Catherina Lee from Australia.
Vienna Würstelstand (VWS): How the hell did you end up Vienna?
Catherina (C): I first did a violin masterclass when I was 14 with a bunch of different professors across Europe.
I met Gerhard Schulz – who’s my professor now – and he said “yeah, you’re talented, maybe you could be in my class.”
So I did the exam when I was 15 and I started studying here in Vienna.
VWS: And you came without your family?
VWS: What was it like when you first arrived here?
C: I started my Bachelor (at the Universität für Musik) immediately, which now I think it wasn’t the smartest decision I made.
I was 15 and had the idea – “I wanna be a real uni student!” Then I started, but didn’t speak German at all.
I had to take all of these classes – musical acoustics and history – and no one knew I was 15, so they were talking to me like an adult and calling me – “die Dame”!
VWS: Do you have any regrets?
C: Yeah, I think at the beginning I wasn’t given enough rules and restrictions. I mean, I was living alone in a city at 15 so I was free to do whatever I wanted.
This meant, of course, that I was never practicing!
VWS: If you were a musical instrument which one would you be?
C: I know it’s so lame, but I think I’d probably be a violin.
I wish I could say I would be a piano, ’cause that’s so much cooler, so much more powerful.
But realistically, I’d probably be a violin.
‘The violin (and especially the viola) resembles the human voice more than other instruments. And it looks like a woman’s body!
But I’m not very curvy, so I probably should be a flute.’