Wil Baptiste (viola) and Kev Marcus (violin) are a string duo from Florida with equal footing in the worlds of classical music and hip-hop. These young, African-American string powerhouses have
Wil Baptiste (viola) and Kev Marcus (violin) are a string duo from Florida with equal footing in the worlds of classical music and hip-hop. These young, African-American string powerhouses have been playing together since high they were students at Dillard High School of the Performing Arts in Ft. Lauderdale. Classically trained by day, they faithfully put on their headphones and listened to the hottest rap records each night. They went to different colleges, but eventually reconvened and developed an act covering hip-hop songs on their violins. Two years after sending in a tape to Showtime at the Apollo, they were invited to appear on the show, which they won, and kept winning. Since then, they have performed with Alicia Keys at the Billboard Awards, toured with Mike Shinoda of Linkin Park, opened for Wu-Tang Clan, scored an episode of CSI: New York, and even performed for President Obama at his second inauguration in 2013. Individually and together, Wil and Kev have worked with everyone from Kanye West to Tom Petty, Lupe Fiasco to Aerosmith. In an age where music is coming to be more and more defined by the labels given to it, Black Violin shows that music does not exist within a box, but rather exists in another space – one as open and unrestrained as the minds that produce it.