'Look and Listen' - Catherine on Cello related video clips

Cello Videos

In this page Catherine is going to select and talk about some music video clips - some of great players and singers and some about becoming a better player.

Kevin Olusola: Julie-O

Hip-Hop Cello-Beatbox Experience

I only discovered Julie-O in late 2009 when I had the privilege of hearing it played by Maddy a brilliant cellist who was about to record it for her A level performance. It is a wonderful piece and this man is stunning too. Talk about multi-tasking

Stjepan Hauser and Luka Sulic: Smooth Criminal

Stjepan has been a long time coming. Here is an amazing classical cellist (he is a member of the Greenwich Piano Trio) and has a strong musical identity and feel that encompasses folk music and pop classics.

Within a month or so of putting up this video on Youtube of Michael Jacksons 1987 hit Smooth Criminal from the album Bad, there were more than three million hits. They are cello rockers.

The arrangement itself is fantastic and he and Luka (also incredible) are being both the melody, harmony and rhythm section with great power and energy. I bet MJ would love this!

I love this sort of work and I'm really happy to help my students develop this path.

Apocalyptica: Nothing Else Matters

This band of four Finnish cellists has been expanding the image of the cello to massive audiences for a long time and making it both cool and accessible. They formed in 1993 and released an album of covers by Metallica. They show again how pure music itself - with no need for a reference to it's classification- simply speaks to us. This Metallica classic, sounds like a late nineteenth century operatic aria.

Jaqueline Du Pre

Several of my students (all men) have noticed that they are made more aware of technique by watching women cellists rather than men. I think this is because you can literally see more as men tend to have their arms covered by jackets!

When you watch Jackie, you see sheer beauty of technique, elegance and a deep sensuousness. You feel she registered every grain of the wood of her fingerboard. Watch the fingering she uses - how expressive it is and how vocal. Her preparation looks effortless and its timing, perfect.

Pablo Cassels

Janet Baker: When I am laid in earth

This aria is from Purcells only opera, Dido and Aneas. Written in 1689, it is really a chamber piece. When I am laid in earth is one of the great arias.

What I love about this performance is the way it builds in power. Dido knows she is going to die soon and Janet Baker sings gently at first and then has one of those sudden surges of energy that people often talk of the dying having.

This was recorded at Glyndebourne in the 60s and it would now be performed with the superb OAE in period style. In this performance the tension and passion of the harmonies feels all the more intense for the traditional string sound with the violins in particular on an emotional edge.

Phillipe Jarousky with L'Arpeggiata and Christina Pluhar

Here is a piece of perfection! This is an exquisite pop song. Nothing has changed really: we have the same themes of love and loss and the same journey for around three minutes into someone else's heart.

I was given the album Teatro d'Amore (Virgin Classics Label) where I discovered this song, a couple of years ago. It traces Monteverdis musical life and creative development and shows how groovy, expressive and inventive early music is. For instance, the walking bass didn't start in the twentieth century, but the 16th. In other words, we often have an archetypal musical language, rather than an obvious historical one - things just come back and around.

Christina Pluhar is the amazing Lutenist who founded the group L'Arpeggiata and conceives of really original album ideas. Look at her other fascinating projects.

Magdalena Kozena: Scherza Infida

This aria Scherza Infida is about betrayal. The orchestration is dark; the addition of the bassoon to create the hollow ed out and haunting sound is inspired.

I think this performance works so well as all the players who can stand, are standing and so there is a sense of wave movement around the central character. Magdalena Kozena lives this. I love the sense of space in the music - the way it breathes- and how the da capo section is decorated so movingly.

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