Performance at AAA's Culture Shock

After some awesome logistical coordination, we are happy to announce that we will be performing for AAA's Culture Shock 2013! 

We haven't decided what to play yet, but please come out and support us!

AAA Culture Shock.jpg
Posted on November 5, 2013 .

First feature on the Huffington Post!

We have been amazed by the feedback on our Lady Gaga video!  Not only have we soared to the front of r/videos and r/listentothis on reddit, but we're also featured today for the first time on the front page of arts and culture of the Huffington Post!


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String Theory has taken the musical diva’s hit song “Applause” and given it a classical treatment with five cellos. Click play on the video above to take in some pop-made-classical culture today with a rendition that even Bach would likely applaud.
— William Goodman
Posted on October 14, 2013 .

New Video: Applause by Lady Gaga!

  We are so proud to share with you String Theory's latest cover, Applause by Lady Gaga!

Lady Gaga has always been one of String Theory's primary inspirations. Not afraid to be bold, not afraid to go for something new. When Applause was first released, we were moved by the rich harmonies and rhythm and decided to shoot a music video. We ended up shooting in a darker setting for a more mysterious effect. Audio was recorded by Nathan Chan and mixed and mastered by Tano Brock. ( For the video we enlisted the talents of Bernhard Fasenfest.

Sheet music is on sale here: 

Applause is a song   by American recording artist Lady Gaga, from her upcoming third studio album,   Artpop (2013). Written and produced by Lady Gaga and DJ White Shadow, the   song was released on August 12, 2013 by Interscope Records as the album's   lead single.

Arranged by Justin Zhao. 2013. 17 pages with score.

Add To Cart
Posted on October 13, 2013 .

Sight Reading Party: A Success!

In collaboration with the beloved John Jay Hall at Columbia University, we hosted a huge sight reading party + jam session with various musicians who played all kinds of instruments: violin, trombone, beatboxing flute, and piano (although we were quite cello-heavy) in John Jay Lounge.

We went through about 200 pages of sheet music in 2.5 hours. This + cookies and milk + chips and salsa + an extremely loving and supportive audience can only mean one of the most fun Friday evenings we could ask for! 

Kudos to the extremely talented music community at Columbia and Juilliard and Columbia-Juilliard!

Photos (Credits to Robert Ying, SEAS 2016):

Posted on October 13, 2013 .

Don't You Worry Child!

A long time / hi-quality production of one of our favorite songs, Don't You Worry Child!

The original song by Swedish House Mafia is an awesome mix of dissonance, rhythm, percussion, and melody. As it's a little more difficult to replicate those heavy beats on the delicate cello, so we extracted that out and instead focused on the awesome acoustic properties of the song.

The arrangement is for sale in the store if you are looking to play it!

And lastly congratulations and a big shout out to our collaborators Max Bartick and Adam Reis for the directing of the production and the live audio recording (that's right, no fudging!)


Hope you enjoy it and please share it if you think it's awesome!


Posted on May 14, 2013 .

Game of Thrones??

In a sort of last-minute get together with some talented people from WKCR and BWOG, we've released another music video, this time the theme from some of us's favorite TV show, Game of Thrones!

Be sure to check out the video and share it if you think it's awesome!


Posted on May 8, 2013 .


It's a big time for String Theory. Sunday at 11:30 AM, String Theory will be performing at Low Plaza at Columbia University! Check out the details here at

Come out and enjoy 30 minutes of incredible music and creativity!


Posted on October 7, 2012 .

Beginning the Year: Sight-Reading Party!

It will soon be String Theory's second birthday! To celebrate, we will be having a sight reading party in John Jay Lounge, this Saturday at 7PM -- just in time before people go down to the city to celebrate the weekend!

Feel free to stop by to listen, and, if you are a cellist, bring along your cello and play with us! It will be a night filled with all kinds of music, fun, embarrasment (maybe?), and making new friends. 



Posted on September 6, 2012 .

The Final Product: Viva La Vida



Coming together to put together this music video has truly been a gratifying experience. String Theory was founded on the idea of inspiring other people to embark on their own creative musical journeys like we have ourselves and we are happy to see many people enjoy what we have created. Our efforts are now on YouTube for everyone to see and enjoy, and we are very excited.

Even though Viva La Vida was a thoroughly covered piece because of its acoustically compatibile features in the original song and its very catchy, falsely 7/8 synchopated meter, re-doing it in the perspective of 5 cellos not only proved to be a good starting piece for our later songs, but also an eye-opening experience to see how far we could go with a single piece!

While we enjoy the release of this music video with you, our watchers and supporters, String Theory looks forward to what we will do next! Thanks for all of your support!

Posted on June 12, 2012 .

A Behind The Scenes Look at String Theory's Viva La Vida!

Catch a glimpse at what went on behind the scenes to our upcoming music video release! We filmed the music video in Roone Arledge Hall, which is one of the largest auditorium's at Columbia University in the City of New York. After learning Justin's great Viva La Vida arrangement for 5 cellos, we wanted to take it a step further and see if we could record and produce a music video for it. We eventually recorded the piece and uploaded the song to iTunes. Enlisting the help of Jackie Ho, a rising junior and a good friend, we were so happy to have her help us with the music video! While she recorded and edited the music video, all of us chipped in to help create this behind the scenes. If you enjoyed it, don't forget to check out the song on iTunes! And our youtube video!

Posted on June 10, 2012 .

String Theory's Latest Milestone!

We are pleased to announce that String Theory, Columbia University's premier cello ensemble, have now released "Viva La Vida" for 5 Cellos on iTunes and Spotify!!! We have been working on this for a couple of months now, and this release really represents a milestone for the pop-classical fusion ensemble. Featuring Corinna Boylan, Justin Zhao, Maddie Tucker, Nathan Chan and Steven Bennett, we are proud to share this momentous occasion with you!

We recorded the song at Columbia University in one night using a friend's microphone and Garageband. We really liked the way it sounded. We refined and refined and what you hear is the final product we all agreed sounded incredible. Our good friend Jackie Ho designed the incredible album artwork. Hats off to her for creating such a stunning image featuring a picture of our cellos!

iTunes: Viva La Vida - Single

Spotify: String Theory – Viva La Vida


And for those of you wondering, a music video is in the works!

Stay tuned!

Posted on May 6, 2012 .