Entries tagged with: Yo Yo Ma

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by Andrew Frisicano


Many of the weekend's 9/11 memorials chose to mark the anniversary with music. The official commemoration at Ground Zero included performances by Paul Simon (who performed "The Sound of Silence"), James Taylor (who played "You Can Close Your Eyes"), the Brooklyn Youth Chorus and cellist Yo-Yo Ma. Video of those tributes are below.

At the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Wordless Music Orchestra commemorated the anniversary with three pieces of music for string quartet--Ingram Marshall's "Fog Tropes II," Osvaldo Golijov's "Tenebrae" and Alfred Schnittke's "Collected Songs Where Every Verse Is Filled with Grief"--and the debut of an orchestrated version of William Basinski's "The Disintegration Loops dpl 1.1." The musicians played seated at the center of the Temple of Dendur (where St. Vincent recently performed) while the audience faced them and the looming sandstone structures.

The afternoon's second half was dedicated to Basinski's piece, which has served as a 9/11 elegy since its creation. That relationship will continue: before the start of the program, it was announced that the work would be a permanent fixture at the 9/11 Memorial Museum. The full room listened in reverential silence to Maxim Moston's live arrangement, which unfolded over a reflective 40 minutes. After the last note died out, conductor Ryan McAdams paused for a several-minutes-long moment of silence, before giving way to a round of applause, which both composer and arranger were in attendance to receive.

The entire concert is streaming (with some insightful commentary between pieces) and the live version of "The Disintegration Loops dpl 1.1" will be available as a limited-time download at NPR Music.

Videos are below...

Continue reading "Wordless Orchestra at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (and other 9/11 memorial shows that happened too)"

Andrew Bird @ MHOW in 2008 (more by Kyle Dean Reinford)
Andrew Bird

Summer is not technically here, but the summer season of free NYC shows is beginning. Summerstage (which now encompasses shows in many NYC parks) kicks off tonight (6/7) in two locations. The mainstage in Central Park is hosting "an evening of music, dance, art and stories with legendary cellist Yo-Yo Ma, his internationally acclaimed Silk Road Ensemble, and NYC students." On the other side of the spectrum, Betsy Head Park in Brownsville, Brooklyn is hosting the first of Funkmaster Flex's Salute to Hip Hop" shows tonight with EPMD. Special Ed plays Betsy Head Park on Wednesday (6/8). B.T. Express play there on Thursday (6/9).

Flex and EPMD again share the bill at an early show (2 PM doors) on the Central Park Mainstage with Rakim on August 21. Flex moves to other parks throughout the summer too.

To stereotype for a second, BV readers may not be flocking to see the cellist in Central Park or the hip hop in Brownsville this week, but are likely to be out in full force when indie rock violinist Andrew Bird kicks off the free Celebrate Brooklyn season in Prospect Park this Friday (6/10). After the opening night gala, the free-to-the-public Andrew Bird show begins (with no opener) at 8:15pm.

You can also pay to see Andrew on his previously announced solo tour this fall which hits Bardavon 1869 Opera House in Poughkeepsie on October 17 (tickets and Tarrytown Music Hall in Tarrytown on October 21 (tickets).


Celebrate Brooklyn continues on Thursday, June 16 (7:00pm / gates 6:00pm) with Hal Willner's Freedom Rides Project...

"The maverick music producer HAL WILLNER brings his golden Rolodex and singular genius for curating multi-artist concept shows to the music of the Civil Rights Movement. Commissioned for Celebrate Brooklyn!, this concert celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Freedom Rides, which integrated the interstate bus system and helped bring America's and the world's attention to the deprivations of the segregated South. In what promises to be an unforgettable event, Willner will convene his usual surprising and eclectic array of musicians, actors, and other artists--established and emerging, famous and infamous--to perform songs that inspired, illuminated, and sprang from the tumultuous aftermath of the Movement. The evening begins with a pre-performance artists discussion. Performers subject to change.
Other artists playing the show include Rosanne Cash, Toshi Reagon, Steven Bernstein "& many more."

Medeski, Martin & Wood play Central Park Summerstage on Saturday (6/11) as part of the Blue Note Jazz Festival with Josh Roseman & The King Froopy Allstars and Jim Black's Alasnoaxis.

Many more free summer shows to come. Check out the full Summerstage and Celebrate Brooklyn lineups at their sites.

Regina Spektor at Tibet House Benefit 2010 (more by Chris La Putt)
Regina Spektor

The New Yorker Festival is back (Oct 1-3), and will feature a variety of events including a premiere of The Social Network to Werner Herzog to Pee Wee Herman to the dude from Beetlejuice who yells at his kids, and everything in between. So far the musical interview lineup includes Regina Spektor, Yo Yo Ma, Justin Timberlake (promoting "The Social Network") and James Taylor. Sometimes those include short performances, though no performances have been announced so far. Tickets go on sale 9/10 at noon, and all festival details are below...

Continue reading "2010 New Yorker Festival - lineup & ticket info"

Yo Yo Ma

Millions of viewers heard a recording of the dulcet tones played by a celebrated quartet of musicians at President Barack Obama's inauguration rather than the notes the group actually played.

Carole Florman, a spokeswoman for the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies, says the weather was too cold for the instruments to stay in tune. Cellist Yo-Yo Ma, violinist Izhak Perlman, pianist Gabriella Montero and clarinetist Anthony McGill made the decision on Inauguration Day Tuesday to use an audio tape of their performance that they had laid down two days earlier.

Florman says the musicians "very insistant on playing live until it became clear that it would be too cold," making it impossible for the instruments to hold tune. People sitting near them could hear the musicians play, but their instruments were not amplified. [AP]

That may also explain why Yo Yo was using his normal cello instead of the high-tech, carbon-fiber one the NY Times reported he would be using.

Video of the "performance" below...

Continue reading "Yo Yo Ma didn't actually kill it - Izhak Perlman & friends played the Inauguration to taped music"

Itzahk Perlman, left, talks with cellist Yo-Yo Ma @ rehearsal
Yo Yo Ma

When the cellist Yo-Yo Ma takes to the inaugural stage on Tuesday [he is on that stage as I type this], the instrument he will have may take music enthusiasts by surprise. Black, with a single-piece body, neck and peg box, and with no scroll at the top, the cello is a high-tech carbon-fiber instrument designed to withstand the cold.

Created by Luis Leguia and his Massachusetts-based company, Luis and Clark, the cello is unaffected by temperature and humidity, which can crack or split the delicate antique instruments that professionals usually use. Mr. Ma plans to play his Luis and Clark cello if the weather warrants, said his manager, Mary Pat Buerkle. His other cello, a 1733 Montagnana from Venice, is worth more than $2 million. Mr. Ma will be playing a score by John Williams with Itzhak Perlman on violin, Gabriela Montero on piano and Anthony McGill on clarinet. Mr. Perlman could not be reached for comment. [NY Times]

UPDATE: It appears he didn't need to use the new cello.

Obama is now the president.