2Cellos and The Piano Guys at the PAC

This year Pam and I have gone to shows by 2Cellos and The Piano Guys at the Performing Arts Center at Cal Poly. Both are acts that rose to fame via YouTube and now are signed to deals with Sony. Both prominently feature cellos, which is predictable with 2Cellos but might be a surprise when you see the name The Piano Guys.

We saw 2Cellos first, on March 21. The tickets had a warning printed on them that the show was a high volume event. I noticed that a substantial portion of the packed house appeared to be elderly and refined, dressed for a classical concert. The opening song was Benedictus, which is hauntingly beautiful and mellow. And in that moment it seemed like a classical concert.

But that only lasted for approximately seven minutes.

And suddenly Benedictus turned to Where the Streets Have No Name (at high volume). It was now a rock show. Here is a YouTube clip of that transition (but you miss the grandeur of the concert hall swelling with the sound.

And it just went on from there. My personal favorites were the AC/DC songs, with Back in Black and Thunderstruck at the top of the list. By this time many of the refined guests had found the exits, appalled at the classic rock.

The banter between Luka and Stjepan was entertaining, filled with double entendres and ironic rock star pandering. It was fun to watch these masterful musicians perform.  I thoroughly enjoyed the concert.

On May 13 we saw The Piano Guys. This was also a very fun show. It featured more interaction with the crowd, more processed backing tracks, and less classic rock, and lower overall volume. Jon and Steven showed a polished showmanship that was enjoyable. I didn’t see anyone walk out of this show. The set was considerably longer than the 2Cellos set.

The percussive elements of The Piano Guys were elaborate and fun.

Each show had its merits. I’m glad I went to both of them. I must say, however, that the classic rock made me smile a bit more than the pop songs and classical music. Cellos are wonderful instruments.

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