TwoSet Violin is an Australian YouTube duo formed in 2013, made up of Australian violinists Brett Yang and Eddy Chen. They are best known for their antics on the YouTube channel of the same name, which has reached over 1.73 million subscribers and 316 million views as of October 2019.
TwoSet Violin performing at Merkin Concert Hall in New York City on October 31, 2018.
|Born||Brett Yang |
|Total views||316 million|
|Catchphrase(s)||"Practice", "Ling Ling 40 Hours"|
|Updated 6 October 2019|
Brett Yang and Eddy Chen first met each other in math tutoring, when Brett was 14 and Eddy 13. They became acquainted through being the youngest members of a youth orchestra, and later students at Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University in Brisbane, Australia. Yang's debut at Queensland Conservatorium was playing the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto in 2012, and he has worked with various Australian orchestras, including a performance at the 2014 G20 Brisbane summit. Chen was a finalist for the National Young Virtuoso Award in Queensland in 2014, and had played with the Queensland and Melbourne symphonies.
In 2013, they started posting YouTube videos of cover tunes of pop music played on the violin. In an interview with CutCommon, Brett Yang said that they saw violin virtuosos who had racked up millions of views on YouTube playing covers and had attempted to the same to minimal reaction. They then discovered that violinist Ray Chen had made a few funny videos, and changed their content to a less serious, more comedic tone. They focused on their lives in the conservatorium culture, classical musicians, and as students, and viewership increased dramatically.
Yang and Chen had played in the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and Queensland Symphony Orchestra respectively, but had produced their own material to do a tour, which was in the format more of a comedy act than a concert. The act would feature violin playing woven through the story-line. Using KickStarter as their fundraising method, and doing busking in Sydney, they raised enough money to go on a worldwide tour in 2017 to 11 cities in 10 countries, in Asia and Europe including Taipei, Helsinki, and Frankfurt. In 2018, they toured places in the United States including New York City, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.
In 2018, their YouTube channel received the Silver Play Button, and in 2019, they received the Gold Play Button.
Videos, gimmicks and themesEdit
In 2017, TwoSet Violin created an off-screen fictional character by the name of Ling Ling to represent the unattainably perfect violinist who practices 40 hrs a day, in addition to performing impossible tasks related to the violin. In an interview with Yle Uutiset, they describe Ling Ling as a main boss of a video game, a Chuck Norris of violin players. Eddy Chen said they improvised the character from their comedy sketch video where a teenage violin student's tiger mom talks about how her friend's child practices 40 hours a day. In 2018, they released a series of videos called the Ling Ling Workout. In these series, the duo draws a classical piece (or contemporary music), and a playing "handicap" such as double speed, with a string tuned oddly, dancing or hula hooping while playing, with hand positions reversed, or while upside down. Prominent violinists such as Ray Chen, Ziyu He, and Hilary Hahn have also attempted the challenge.
In July 2018, they released a series of videos where they appear to be playing classical music using rubber chickens. In August 2018, they released a video series called "1% Violin Skills, 99% Editing Skills" in which Yang attempts to play a difficult piece, and Chen asks him to play a chromatic scale. Chen then uses video editing to piece together the notes as originally composed. Other gimmicks have included "Violin Charades", playing other instruments, and viola jokes. For April Fool's Day 2019, they claimed they discovered a Double Violin Concerto by JS Bach.
TwoSet Violin have also reviewed films that feature violin playing, calling out egregious fake performances. In March 2019, they also criticized Chinese idols Ju Jingyi and Ma Xueyang of giving a fake violin performance on a show.
On 14 September 2018, TwoSet Violin posted a reaction video to a BBC News story titled "Fastest Violinist in the World", in which they critiqued violinist Ben Lee's Guinness World Record claim of playing "Flight of the Bumblebee" for its inaccurate intonation; they then timed themselves purposefully playing random fast notes before declaring they had just broken the world record. In April 2019, the duo critiqued Vov Dylan, another fastest violinist claimant, saying that it was even worse than his predecessor. In May 2019, Guinness World Records made an announcement about the Fastest Violin Player record, saying that "the record is no longer a category...as it has become impossible to judge the quality of the renditions... it is not clear if all notes have been played fully." The Fastest musician records had already been rested, prior to the release of the reaction videos.
- TwoSetViolin. "TwoSet Brett & Eddy talk about things they don't usually talk about..." Youtube. Retrieved 21 December 2018.
- Ball, Meghna (13 April 2017). "Brisbane YouTubers Twoset Violin and their global quest to preserve classical music". Australian Broadcasting Company. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
- Wood, Eleanor (23 November 2016). "TwoSet Violin: The Brisbane music graduates breaking the internet". CutCommon. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
- Sergi, Justin (12 October 2016). "Twoset Violin Offer A Guide to Understanding Conservatory Friends". WQXR. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
- "TwoSet Violin are launching a crowdfunded world tour". Classic FM (UK). 25 March 2017. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
- Rochester, Marc (9 October 2017). "TwoSet Violin mix classical music with comedy". The Straits Times. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
- "TwoSet Violin World Tour Los Angeles". Colburn School. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
- Vanasse, Jacqueline (13 November 2017). "TwoSet Violin – Hilarious with a Cause". Violinist.com. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
- "TwoSet Violin World Tour". www.musiikkitalo.fi. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
- "TwoSet Violin World Tour Frankfurt - 14 October 2018". Evensi. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
- "TwoSet Violin World Tour – Wednesday,October 31 2018, 7 pm". Kaufman Music Center. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
- TwoSet Violin [@twosetviolin] (26 September 2018). "So San Francisco sold out in one hour..." (Tweet). Retrieved 18 October 2018 – via Twitter.
- Kim, Alina. "TwoSet Violin Perfects Their Practice". Chicago Maroon. Retrieved 22 December 2018.
- Matilla, Mattias (11 October 2018). "Tämän kaksikon sketsejä on katsottu somessa jo satoja miljoonia kertoja – meemien ja klassisen musiikin yhdistelmä osoittautui hittireseptiksi" [This duo's sketches have been watched hundreds of millions of times in Finland - the combination of memes and classical music turned out to be a hit recipe]. Yle Uutiset (in Finnish). Retrieved 10 November 2018.
- Betts, Richard (28 May 2019). "Social media adds new strings to musicians' bows". The New Zealand Herald.
- "Hilary Hahn does the Ling Ling Workout (video)". 17 December 2018 – via The Strad.
- Johari, Aarefa (1 January 2019). "New Year smiles: Want to play like a world-class musician without actually being one? Watch this". Scroll.in.
- Alton, Jenna (16 August 2018). "The Clean Cut: Classical musician creates impressive version of Pachelbel's Canon using rubber chickens". Deseret News. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
- Sweeney, Chris (1 August 2018). "Wacky World of Rubber: Making music with rubber chickens". Rubber & Plastics News. Crain Communications. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
- Santiago, Amanda Luz Henning (10 August 2018). "Please use this rubber-chicken rendition of 'Wedding March' in your upcoming nuptials". Mashable. Retrieved 18 October 2018.
- TwoSet Violin. 1% Violin Skills 99% Editing Skills. Retrieved 22 December 2018 – via YouTube.
- References to Twoset Violin's professional vs. beginner videos
- Queensland Symphony Orchestra [@qsorchestra] (31 May 2018). "🙌🏻 Amazing work, HyungSuk Bae! @TwoSetViolin Professional vs Beginner Cellist Full video ➡️ youtu.be/RhXnff1daXk" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
- Queensland Symphony Orchestra [@qsorchestra] (18 June 2018). "👏🏻 Love your work, Phoebe Russell! @TwoSetViolin Professional vs Beginner Double Bassist Full video ➡️ youtu.be/GsH4wzmmRkE" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
- Viola-related videos:
- TwoSet Violin (24 May 2018). Violin vs Viola. Retrieved 10 November 2018 – via YouTube.
- TwoSet Violin (4 March 2018). Viola Gang. Retrieved 12 November 2018 – via YouTube.
- TwoSet Violin (23 November 2017). The Viola King Returns (Black Friday Sales Ad). Retrieved 12 November 2018 – via YouTube.
- TwoSet Violin (3 March 2018). Bought a Viola for Brett's Birthday!. Retrieved 10 November 2018 – via YouTube.
- Davis, Elizabeth (1 April 2019). "These are the best musical April Fools of 2019". Classic FM.
- MacDonald, Kyle (3 January 2019). "Actors being roasted by two professional violinists is hilariously brutal". Classic FM.
- Cai Xuejiao (6 March 2019). "Aussie Violinists Say Chinese Celebs Fiddled With the Truth". Sixth Tone.
- Lebrecht, Norman (10 November 2018). "Why be the fastest violinist if you mostly play wrong notes?". Slipped Disc. Retrieved 9 July 2019.
- TwoSetViolin (26 April 2019). New "fastest violinist in the world" is even faster (and more sacrilegious). Retrieved 5 July 2019 – via YouTube.
- "Guinness World Records has just announced that 'fastest Violin Player' is no longer an existing record!". Retrieved 5 July 2019 – via Reddit.
- TwoSet Violin (16 May 2019). We Officially ENDED the Fastest Violinist Record. Retrieved 5 July 2019 – via YouTube.
- "Fastest Guitar Player - Guinness World Records Classics". 18 October 2012 – via YouTube.
- "Reasons applications are rejected". Guinness World Records. Archived from the original on 21 October 2017. Retrieved 24 July 2019.
Fastest musician (Fastest violin player, piano player, etc.): after conducting a full and thorough review Guinness World Records has concluded that we are unfortunately unable to continue monitoring these categories. It has become impossible to judge the quality of the renditions, even when slowed down.
- "14-year-old going for fastest guitar record". KXTV.