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2Cellos (stylized 2CELLOS) is a Croatian[1] cello duo, consisting of Luka uli and Stjepan Hauser. Signed to Sony Masterworks since 12 April 2011, the two were discovered after uploading a music video of their cello-only cover of Michael Jackson's "Smooth Criminal" to YouTube.[2]


uli, born in Maribor, SR Slovenia (now Slovenia)[3] and Hauser, born in Pula, SR Croatia (now Croatia), both classically trained musicians, met at a master class in Croatia while still in their teens. ulithe younger of the two by a year attended the Academy of Music in Zagreb, and then studied in Vienna. uli later entered London's Royal Academy of Music. Hauser attended the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, after completing his studies at Trinity College in London.[4]

The duo rose to fame after their cover of "Smooth Criminal" became a hit on YouTube,[5] receiving over three million views in the first two weeks[4] and over ten million views in all.[6] The creation of the music video was prompted by the cellists' financial difficulties, despite their musical success in the UK. The duo met in Pula, where one of Hauser's friends, a director, proposed that they try the pop music market by creating a video to "Smooth Criminal." The video, originally posted on 20 January 2011,[7] features uli and Hauser facing off alone in a large white room, playing Jackson's tune.[4] In fact, before they became partners, the two cellists were sometimes considered rivals, competing against each other in music contests.[7]


2Cellos is currently signed to record label, Sony Masterworks,[8] and finished recording their first album in May 2011,[9] which carried the Menart Records name in Croatia.[10] Released on 19 July 2011,[11] their debut eponymous album, includes covers of songs by U2, Guns N' Roses, Nine Inch Nails, Sting, Coldplay, Nirvana, Muse, and Kings of Leon. Hauser told la Repubblica that the album would also feature a cello version of Michael Jackson's "Human Nature."[4] The duo said that they chose songs that could be adapted into covers playable on only two cellos.[12] In anticipation of the release, 2Cellos released their second single "Welcome to the Jungle," a cover of the Guns N' Roses song of the same name.[7][13]

British singer Elton John asked the duo to appear with him on his 2011 summer tour,[5] which began in Cardiff, Wales on 8 June.[4] John, who personally called uli, said that he had watched the "Smooth Criminal" video and wanted 2Cellos to participate in the thirty-city tour.[14] The two had previously performed on The Ellen DeGeneres Show of 25 April 2011.[8][15] 2Cellos also performed at the 2011 iTunes Festival in London.[14]

The duo performed an arrangement of "Smooth Criminal" in the third season of the television show Glee.[16] The episode in which they appeared, titled "Michael", aired on 31 January 2012, and was the first time that the series highlighted instrumental musicians. The scene featuring "Smooth Criminal" was set up similar to 2Cellos' original music video for the song.[17] On 4 June 2012 2Cellos performed with Elton John at the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Concert at Buckingham Palace.On 12 June 2012 2Cellos performed in front of full Arena Zagreb.

Although the two record covers of mainly rock songs, uli and Hauser say they still play with orchestras and will not abandon playing classical music. The cellists say they would someday like to go on tour with both a classical and a contemporary orchestra.[7] Their second studio album, entitled In2ition, came out early 2013, and features new twists on a diverse range of classic tracks with a few surprise vocal and instrumental duet partners including Elton John, Lang Lang, Naya Rivera, Steve Vai, Sky Ferreira and Zucchero. The album was produced by the legendary Bob Ezrin (Peter Gabriel, KISS, Pink Floyd). Other tracks include covers of AC/DC's "Highway to Hell" featuring Vai, Coldplay's "Clocks" featuring Lang Lang, Muse's "Supermassive Black Hole" featuring Rivera, an Italian version of "The Book of Love" by The Magnetic Fields entitled "Il Libro Dell'Amore" featuring Zucchero, Karl Jenkins' "Benedictus", and "Oh Well" featuring Sir Elton.[18]

In July 2013, the duo filmed a commercial for the Japanese mobile phone company, Docomo.[19] Their second album, In2ition, debuted at number 1 on the Japanese Albums Chart, in August 2013.[20] As a part of their world tour with Elton John, that included concerts in North America, Europe and Asia, 2Cellos performed at Madison Square Garden two days in a row, in December 2013.[21] In March 2014, they have a solo Japanese tour.[22]


Main article: 2Cellos discography
  • 2Cellos (2011)
  • In2ition (2013)


Year Award Category Nominee Result Ref.
2012 Porin Best International Album 2Cellos Won [23]
Best International Song "Smooth Criminal" Won
2013 Best International Album In2ition Nominated [24]
2014 Japan Gold Disc Award Instrumental Album of the Year Won [25]
Veernjakova rua Musicians of the Year 2Cellos Pending [26]


  1. 2Cellos Bio, 2cellos.com. URL accessed on 13 July 2013.
  2. Koruga, Igor, Hrvatski violonelisti potpisali ugovor sa Sony Music Entertainmentom, Nacional, 14 April 2011. URL accessed on 10 June 2011.
  3. Biografija Luke ulia, matica.hr, Matica hrvatska.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 Videtti, Giuseppe, Il violoncello da favola di Luka e Stjepan da YouTube ai concerti di Elton John, la Repubblica, Gruppo Editoriale L'Espresso, 6 June 2011. URL accessed on 10 June 2011.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Slovenian, Croatian Cellists Make Breakthrough on YouTube, STA, Slovenian Press Agency, 19 May 2011. URL accessed on 10 June 2011.
  6. Video: Hrvaka violonelista videlo na milijone Amerianov, Radiotelevizija Slovenija, MMC RTV Slovenija, 26 April 2011. URL accessed on 10 June 2011.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Cervera, Marty, Los chelos del pop, El Periódico de Catalunya, Grupo Zeta, 7 June 2011. URL accessed on 10 June 2011.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Sony MASTERWORKS Signs Viral Internet Sensation 2CELLOS, TalkTunesworld.com, Wisdom Digital Media, 19 April 2011. URL accessed on 9 June 2011.
  9. Mariborski elist bo z Eltonom Johnom nastopil tudi v Izoli, Radiotelevizija Slovenija, MMC RTV Slovenija, 9 May 2011. URL accessed on 10 June 2011.
  10. 2CELLOS Luka ulic & Stjepan Hausar izdaju album, MTV Croatia, MTV, 16 April 2011. URL accessed on 10 June 2011.
  11. D'Andrea, Niki, "Welcome to the Jungle," As Performed by 2Cellos, Phoenix New Times, Phoenix New Times, LLC, 6 June 2011. URL accessed on 10 June 2011.
  12. Doen, Vanja, Telefonski poziv koji im je promijenio ivot, Jutarnji list, Europapress Holding, 12 April 2011. URL accessed on 10 June 2011.
  13. Hartsell, Carol, 2Cellos Covers 'Welcome To The Jungle', The Huffington Post, TheHuffingtonPost.com, Inc., 8 June 2011. URL accessed on 10 June 2011.
  14. 14.0 14.1 2CELLOS snimaju za Sony i sviraju s Eltonom Johnom, tportal.hr, Hrvatski Telekom, 13 April 2011. URL accessed on 10 June 2011.
  15. Vugrinec, Goran, Vatreni duet nastupio u showu Ellen DeGeneres: Stjepan od estine slomio gudalo!, Dubrovaki Vjesnik, Europapress Holding, 25 April 2011. URL accessed on 10 June 2011.
  16. Keck, William, Keck's Exclusives: More Details on Glee's Salute to Michael Jackson, TV Guide, TV Guide Online Holdings, LLC, 6 January 2012. URL accessed on 6 January 2012.
  17. Jurgensen, John, The Cello Shredders, The Wall Street Journal, Dow Jones & Company, Inc., 13 January 2012. URL accessed on 1 February 2012.
  18. The making of the new album IN2ITION. 2Cellos Official Web Site (5 October 2012). Retrieved on 21 October 2012.
  19. Pogledajte 2Cellos u reklami japanskog mobilnog operatera (Croatian). Gloria (18 July 2013). Retrieved on 2 August 2013.
  20. 201308-1920130825 (Japanese). Oricon (19/08 - 25/08, 2013). Retrieved on 6 September 2013.
  21. 2Cellos su osvojili Madison Square Garden u New Yorku (Croatian). 24sata (04/12/2013). Retrieved on 18 December 2013.
  22. 2Cellos u Madison Square Gardenu (Croatian). Radio Pula (03/12/2013). Retrieved on 18 December 2013.
  23. 2Cellos primili osvojene Porine, dulist.hr, 2013-05-30. URL accessed on 13 July 2013.
  24. FOTO: 2Cellos snimili novi spot za pjesmu Technical Difficulties, Net.hr, 13 July 2013.
  25. The Japan Gold Disc Award 2014, RIAJ, 28 February 2014.
  26. Odabrano 30 najboljih i najzaslunijih u 2013.! Glasujte!, Veernji list, 10 January 2014.

External links

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