Musical duo brings fun twist to classical music

(CBS News) Pianist Richard Hyung-ki Joo and violinist Aleksey Igudesman are bringing Mozart, Bach, and Beethoven to a new generation. But they are not traditional performers. Their current show, "A Little Nightmare Music," can only be described as non-traditional.

At New York's legendary Carnegie Hall, a venue with a rich tradition of hosting classical performances, the two classically-trained modern music virtuosos mix the classical and contemporary.

Their YouTube channel has more than 28 million hits, and their fans now include musical greats like the piano man himself, Billy Joel, who joined them recently at Carnegie Hall.

Igudesman and Joo both fell in love with classical music as kids. And as adults, their show is aimed at making others fall in love with it, too.

Igudesman, when he spoke to CBS News at The Russian Tea Room, said that he knows people think classical music is stuffy. But he said, "The music itself is not stuffy at all. It's exciting. It's fun. Mozart is crazy. Mozart is fun."

But their onstage antics can't hide their undeniable musical talents and commitment to their craft. Igudesman plays an antique violin made in the 18th century.

Igudesman said, "We always say we don't make fun of the music we make fun with the music.

To see Igudesman and Joo at work, watch Elaine Quijano's full report in the video in the player above.

  • Elaine Quijano

    Elaine Quijano was named a CBS News correspondent in January 2010. Quijano reports for "CBS This Morning" and the "CBS Evening News," and contributes across all CBS News platforms. She is based in New York.

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