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The Silk Road Ensemble with Yo-Yo Ma

March 31, 2017 @ 8:00 pm


Described as “vibrant and virtuosic” by the Wall Street Journal, “one of the 21st century’s great ensembles” by the Vancouver Sun, and a “roving musical laboratory without walls” by the Boston Globe, The Ensemble features musicians from more than 20 countries, including spellbinding Syrian clarinetist Kinan Azmeh. They come together under the direction of renowned cellist and UN Messenger of Peace Yo-Yo Ma to co-create art, performances and ideas that fuse, exchange and explore an array of global cultures.
When & where
Friday March 31, 2017 @ 8pm and 10pm
Emirates Palace Auditorium, West Corniche Road - Ras Al Akhdar, Abu Dhabi
United Arab Emirates

Online tickets
Since 2000, the Silk Road Ensemble has been redefining classical music. The group has been called “vibrant and virtuosic” by the Wall Street Journal, “one of the 21st century’s great ensembles” by the Vancouver Sun and a “roving musical laboratory without walls” by the Boston Globe.

Representing a global array of cultures, members co-create art, performances and ideas. Cellist Yo-Yo Ma established the nonprofit organisation to explore the role of the arts in fostering cross-cultural understanding, deepening learning and promoting innovation.

The performers and composers hail from more than 20 countries. Passionate about learning from one another’s traditions, these explorers perform on instruments ranging from world percussion to Western strings. Under the artistic direction of Mr Ma, these storytellers celebrate the multiplicity of approaches to music from around the world. They also continually develop a new repertoire that responds to the new realities of our global society. In engaging, high-energy performances, they draw on the rich tapestry of traditions that make up our shared cultural heritage, creating a new musical language. Their music is a uniquely engaging and accessible encounter between the foreign and the familiar, reflecting our many-layered contemporary identities.

Throughout Asia, Europe and North America, the Silk Road Ensemble has performed in more than 100 cities in over 30 countries, in some of the world’s most lauded venues, from Carnegie Hall to the Concertgebouw as well as at Nobel Prize celebrations in Stockholm, the Sir Bani Yas Forum in the UAE, the Special Olympics in Shanghai, the Lucerne Festival in Switzerland and London’s BBC Proms.
Yo-Yo Ma’s multi-faceted career is a testament to his continual search for new ways to communicate with audiences and to his personal desire for artistic growth and renewal. Whether performing works from the cello repertoire, collaborating on chamber music or exploring cultures and musical forms outside the Western classical tradition, Mr Ma strives to find connections that stimulate the imagination. His work focuses on the transformative power music can have as well as on increasing the variety of opportunities audiences have to experience music in their communities.

As well as being the founder and creative director of the Silk Road Ensemble, Mr Ma is the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Judson and Joyce Green Creative Consultant. In March 2016, he was appointed Artistic Advisor at Large to the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

His more than 100 albums (including 18 Grammy Award winners) reflect wide-ranging interests. All of his recent albums have quickly entered the Billboard chart of classical best sellers, remaining in the Top 15 for extended periods, often with as many as four titles simultaneously on the list.

He has received numerous awards, among them the Avery Fisher Prize (1978), the National Medal of Arts (2001) and the Presidential Medal of Freedom (2010). He is currently serving as a UN Messenger of Peace and as a member of the President’s Committee on the Arts & the Humanities. He has performed for eight American presidents, most recently at the invitation of President Obama on the occasion of the 56th Inauguration Ceremony.

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March 31, 2017
8:00 pm
Event Category:


Emirates Palace Auditorium
West Corniche Road - Ras Al Akhdar
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
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+971 2 690 9000