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8 de Janeiro de 2019.
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Austrian Legend: Falco

He lived how he died… SPECTACULAR

When I got the email with the information about this month’s article I was just listening to “Ganz Wien” by the Austrian legend Falco! So, obviously, the case was clear and I chose him for this Text.

Falco, whose birth name is Johann “Hans” Hölzl was born in 1957 in Vienna. Falco attended several different forms of education and schools, however, none of them seemed to fit. In the end, he quit his music studies because “he wanted to become a real musician”. His first studio album “Der Kommissar” (the commissioner) rapidly dominated the Austrian club scene and was wildly popular in several other European countries.

His second album “Junge Roemer” was, sadly, kind of a flop. Luckily this setback didn’t keep him from producing music. Inspired by another Austrian musician, Mozart, Falco recorded his hit single “Rock me, Amadeus”. This momentous piece of music holds major historical heft and clout as it is still to this day the only song in the German language that ever topped the UK, as well as, the American charts, it even stayed number 1 for 10 weeks.

Being tired of the strict Austrian mentality and the weather, Hölzl moved to sunny Cuba in order to embrace life and to record music. Sadly, Falco was an alcoholic and also addicted to cocaine and other illegal substances. This led to, a bunch of scandals and mysterious rumors about the artist Falco. One morning after a crazy night of heavy drinking and alleged nasal consumption of cocaine, Hölzl woke up in his car still totally dizzy from the previous night. As savage as he was, he decided to drive back into a crowded street. To his morbid misfortune, a bus collided with his vehicle and the horrid result was an instant fatality.

The next morning the Austrian newspapers were full of headlines like “He lived how he died…SPECTACULAR”.

For me Falco isn’t just a part of my growing up, because I listened to my father’s music, for me Falco is also a part of Austrian culture. His mixture of making fun of society (especially Austrian), fellow famous people, and his excessive lifestyle led to a unique style of music. Along with The Beatles, Falco reminds me the most of a long forgotten time and also a completely different way of embracing life compared to nowadays. Even though he praised his excessive lifestyle of abusing alcohol and drugs, he is widely seen as a legend in the eyes of us Austrians.

Short bio of the volunteer:

My name is Raphael Johler and for me, music is and has always been a big part of my daily life. In my eyes the music we like changes who we are and can help us see things differently.


Erasmus+ is a programme of the European Commission embracing the fields of education, training, youth and sports during the period 2014-2020. One of the major aspects is the cooperation between the different fields where the programme acts, hence contributing for a diverse and rich Europe.

Amongst the several goals of the programme, the following are prioritised: the objectives of the Europe 2020 Strategy, including the headline education target; the aims of the strategic framework for European cooperation in education and training (ET 2020), including the corresponding benchmarks; the sustainable development of Partner Countries in the field of higher education; the overall goals of the renewed framework for European cooperation in the youth field (2010-2018); the objective of developing the European dimension in sport, in particular grassroots sport, in line with the EU work plan for sport and the promotion of European values in accordance with Article 2 of the Treaty on the European Union.

In order to achieve these goals, the Erasmus+ has several action policies. The Key Action 1 (KA1) is directed towards the mobility of people; Key Action 2 (KA2) for the cooperation for innovation and the interchange of good experiences; and Key Action 3 (KA3) which is for the support of reformation policies.

European Voluntary Service

Since 1991 the University of Madeira Students’ Union has developed a wide incentive policy for voluntary work. In 2013 the Students’ Union started the process to receive, send and coordinate Erasmus+ projects of the European Voluntary Service, in order to have a larger influence in the volunteering field. The Union received its first volunteer withing the ambit of a KA1 project in 2014. Many efforts have been done to allow young people from Madeira to take part in several initiatives in Europe, as well as propose several projects allowing young people from several countries to work in the projects of the Students’ Union of the University of Madeira. The main goal of the voluntary work is the contribution of the volunteers to the communities and places they will be staying, being their work not rewarded with payment.

We believe that the European Voluntary Service is a mechanism full of experiences, allowing the approved candidates to have the privilege of taking part in these projects and benefit the places and communities where these volunteers will be staying.

Since 2013, the University of Madeira Students’ Union has received volunteers that have collaborated in several activities and initiatives. Besides being able to enjoy a wonderful experience which will contribute to their personal and professional growth, they are able to contribute in a unique way to the community in which they are inserted and to join dozens of volunteers from the University of Madeira.