musicthe sound of your morning

the sound of your morning: portland cello project

by Grace Bonney

Cello print by Heather Webster at Etsy

I’m dedicating this week’s music mix to a seriously fun show I saw last Friday. The Doug Fir in Portland hosted The Portland Cello Project’s “Extreme Cello Dance Party” (yep, you read that right), a celebration of old and new music arranged and played by cellists who were accompanied by some amazing local singers and musicians. I had literally NO idea what to expect, but the entire evening was a blast from start to finish. I wish I could have videotaped the full concert to share here, but luckily, it looks like some people have videotaped past performances and shared them on YouTube. So for today, I wanted to take a little theme time-out and share a glimpse into the world of The Portland Cello Project. If you ever have a chance to attend one of their performances, please, please go. Especially if Christopher Francis Schiel is singing — his rendition of Lady Gaga’s “Love Game” was hilarious. Hope you enjoy . . . xo, grace

Christopher Francis Schiel singing “Get Your Freak On” by Missy Elliot. He was SO much crazier and fantastic at the show I saw. That dude has stage presence coming out of his ears.

John Brophy singing “Toxic” by Britney Spears. He and he wife both sang in the show I saw and were painfully adorable and talented.

Two more videos from the Portland Cello Project continue after the jump…

Along with Dave Depper, the entire crowd sang along to Outkast’s “Hey Ya” with the Cello Project.

Brian Perez of Musee Mecanique singing George Michael’s “One More Try.” Man can he sing.

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  • Oh my gosh! The John Brophy video was hilarious!

    I have been listening to “The Vitamin Strings Quartet” for years. They do covers of popular songs, but with no lyrics. My favorite are the “Tool” songs they cover.

    Thank you so much for sharing! This definitely made my morning!

  • Wow! I’m so bummed to have missed it! I had no idea what they were about and now I’m marking my calendar for when they are here again! Thanks, grace! :)

  • Oh my gosh, A) Love the Doug Fir. That place is so great!

    B) THAT WAS AWESOME! I hope that they decide to go on the road….but I need another trip to Portland anyway, so maybe it’s time.

    Thanks so much!


  • I was at the Saturday Portland Cello Project show at Doug Fir and I agree with you-it’s a crazy fun time. I love anticipating what they are going to cover next! It’s so fun to read your Portland adventures, thanks so much for sharing them!!

  • Great cellos, good voices, but I wish everybody wasn’t so busy being ironic about the whole thing. “Toxic” and “One More Try” are genuinely good pop songs without the I’m-only-joking pose. Hipsters need to relax. Geez.

    • steve

      as someone who saw this live, i can tell you they genuinely enjoyed the songs- no one was uptight, posing or mocking things. they seemed to really love it and work hard and doing the songs well.


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