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Nearby, Fresh & Loud

Only a mini version of the Donauinselfest was able to take place in 2020. This year, all the stops will be pulled out again from 17th to 19th September by Austrian artists performing on four stages.

In truth, however, the coolest venue is still the DIF Bus, which has already been travelling around Vienna since 2nd August! This means: 46-days of parties and concerts in the most unlikely places – from markets to the Central Cemetery.

Samson Nistor is one of the many bus drivers who are working to bring concerts to you. He tells you here what’s so super about his summer job.

DIF bus driver Samson Nistor.
Photo: DIF

Is this your first year as a DIF bus driver?

The #dif21 tour bus set off for the first time in 2020 and I’ve been involved since the very start. This year I’m delighted to be part of the DIF family again. The atmosphere is simply great, with 80 acts performing across all 23 districts. This enables me to discover music that I didn’t know before. As well as places in Vienna that one otherwise doesn’t visit so easily. Certainly not with a bus.

Do you have to like music to be a DIF driver?

It’s certainly an advantage because it means that the job is so much more fun. During the #dif Summer Tour you meet a range of artists, who you not only see and hear performing, but also get to know personally. One plus is the relaxed mood on and around the bus. If you asked me what my job description was, I’d say: Be open, have fun and want to be an important part of the colourful party.

Singer Songwriter Panda with her band.
Photo: DIF

Let's rock!
Photo: DIF

Donauinselfest 2021: To the palace by bus

What are the challenges of driving a tour bus?

If you know your way around Vienna and are an experienced bus driver, you’re already well on track. Some of the places that we drive to are pretty extraordinary, such as the Ceremonial Courtyard in Schloss Schönbrunn. A sightseeing bus isn’t usually allowed to drive there. This is a real highlight for me because when I normally drive a bus I don’t get the chance to practice how to drive into a park.

Can you tell us about some disasters or other anecdotes?

All I can say is: What happens on the bus, stays on the bus :)

Super atmosphere at the Central Cemetery

What are the highlights of this year’s programme?

I’m looking forward to working with our team of moderators Birgit Denk and Roman Gregory. It was already hilarious last year on board with Roman. In terms of music I’d rather not say because, even if it’s not my sound, the mood is still always great. In terms of locations, I’m really looking forward to the Central Cemetery, which I’m driving to this year for the very first time. It’s going to host a Falco tribute. But Ernst Molden and Hans Theessink are also giving a concert together there in front of the church. They’re singing Wienerlieder and English-language country songs, which I think is a really cool mix. In terms of location, Schloss Schönbrunn remains my absolute highlight. When else can you drive a bus through the grounds of a palace?

Photo: Thomas Peschat

And here are three more tips for events that you shouldn’t miss.

  1. The Dives is a showcase project in the area of cool indie garage pop. And the three Viennese musicians can also be strongly recommended as a concert band. On 21st August they’re playing on the Donauinsel, next to the Reichsbrücke, from 21:00.
  2. With Anne Eck there is not only an exceptional musician and label boss on the road with the DIF bus on 26 August, but also a successful Bank Austria crowdfunding project. To be seen at 18.30 at Südtiroler Platz, 1040 Vienna and from 20.00 at Karmelitermarkt, 1020 Vienna.
  3. Not only the two brothers Markus and Thomas Danninger from Zweikanalton will rock the DIF bus at the Austria Campus, Rothschildplatz 1, 1020 Vienna on 02 September at 16:00. On board will also be their band and brand new songs.