Classical musicians got stuck in traffic with their instruments, and there was only one thing to do

6 March 2024, 20:58

Classical musicians got stuck in traffic with their instruments

By Kyle Macdonald

A blocked motorway becomes a concert hall, as a classical violinist and musician friends take out their instruments to help entertain stationary drivers.

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How do you pass the time when stuck in traffic? A podcast? A game of eye-spy? Well, these musicians had quite a different idea.

Floris and the Flames were on their way home to Belgium after a tour in Germany, when they got stuck in a large Autobahn jam in the south of the country. Fortunately, having been on tour, they had their instruments to hand.

Armed with violin, guitar and percussion, the group decided to weave their way through the stationary traffic and verges, bringing light musical relief to the hundreds stuck in four-wheeled limbo.

You can see the delight on the faces of the motorists and passengers, as the musicians serenade drivers, families, bus passengers and everyone in between.

Read more: Youth orchestra expertly trolls car company who made fun of young musicians in TV advert

The band’s frontman Floris Willem told Classic FM: “We were on our way back from concerts in Germany and Austria when we got completely stuck in a long traffic jam in southern Germany.

“To cheer up the traffic jam and ourselves, we came up with the idea of taking our musical instruments from the boot and play for the people,” he said.

“People started filming, dancing and even giving money. And so we all had a good time!”

Here’s the group in a more traditional performance setting, with their folk and rock infused take on Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D minor.

Floris and the Flames - Toccata & Fuga (Live)

Willem is a classically trained violinist, teaching at the Vienna Conservatory. In 2015, he won the prestigious Prix Vieuxtemps violin competition.

The group describes themselves as “four musicians with the same hair colour” – hence the ‘flames’ of the band name.

Maybe in days gone by, classical music’s most famous fiery-haired virtuoso Antonio Vivaldi might have also got his violin out in a similar situation. However, that would have been more likely during a moment of gondola congestion on the canals of Venice.

Floris and the Flames have upcoming concerts in Netherlands and Belgium this spring – find out more and stream their recordings here.

That’s if they don’t surprise you before, by appearing outside your car window when you’re next stuck in traffic...