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From Croatia to New Orleans:2Cellos at the Civic

2Cellos

2Cellos headliners Luka Sulic and Stjepan Hauser

Luka Sulic, 26, and Stjepan Hauser, 27, have played for Prince Charles and Jay Leno, Elton John and Ellen deGeneres. Now these two Croatian cellists are pulling their bus up to the newly-renovated Civic Theatre and bringing their unusual brand of musical performance to New Orleans for the first time.

On Wednesday, October 30, the self-titled 2Cellos will sit on stage with their electric Yamahas and one drummer and play a non-stop 90-minute gig. Included will be their unique version of Michael Jackson’s Smooth Criminal, which became a YouTube viral sensation leading to a record deal with Sony Masterworks and an invitation to join Elton John on his worldwide tour.

While they knew each other growing up in Croatia, Sulic and Hauser never really spent time together until they both found themselves in London, with Sulic in the master’s program at the prestigious Royal Academy of Music and Hauser commuting to and from the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester.

“I met this other crazy dude, Stjepan, my partner in crime, and we started hanging out in London,” Sulic said. “Then we started talking about doing something together.”

The something was their YouTube arrangement of the Michael Jackson song, which debuted at No. 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 Digital Songs Chart and landed the 2Cellos debut album in the Top 100. When Elton John, who also studied at the Royal Academy of Music, saw it, he got in touch with Lukas Sulic and their world changed overnight.

Sulic’s and Hauser’s fan base is now worldwide. They recently performed with the Red Hot Chili Peppers, George Michael and Leona Lewis, and released their second album, IN2ITION, this year.

Talking by phone from Atlanta before the pair went on to Huntsville, Orlando and Tampa, Sulic described how the two musicians pace their show.

“It starts out quiet, classical,” he said. “Then the pace slowly graduates with our 2Cello arrangements and it gets more intense and more intense; it becomes a real rock concert.”

For information about tickets and seating, go to www.civicnola.com.

Sharon Litwin is president of NolaVie. Email her at [email protected]