|A fantastic performer and warm guy, Yo-Yo Ma|
|Waiting for the concert to begin in the concert hall|
Then Ma came out to much applause. He is so gracious and warm, treating orchestra members like cherished colleagues. He work a dark suit and tie, and once the music started, he was full immersed in it, playing his cello so softly we had to be very quiet to hear it.
He played Dvorak's Silent Woods, op. 58, no. 5, a very short piece that was reflective and showcased Ma's mastery of the cello as he played with the orchestra. So ethereal.
Then Ma was joined by Wu Tong, a sheng player to perform Duo, Concerto for Cello and Sheng by Zhao Lin.
|Before the concert, a shot of the moon|
The music is supposed to depict his journey through hardships, hesitation and ultimately leading to tranquility, and so there are three movements too that flow into each other seamlessly.
The sheng is a mouth-blown reed instrument with several pipes. I just remember it having a loud, brash sound, usually marking joyous occasions in folk songs.
But here it was deftly played by Wu, very softly, hardly rough around the edges. And as he played he undulated as if he was dancing with his instrument.
Parts of the music gave the impression of being in the desert, the cello and sheng having a conversation back and forth, complementing each other, very poetic and lyrical. By the end they kind of disappear into nothingness.
There was one encore with Wu and Ma, another composition that was inspired by a drinking song, before Ma came back on his own with another encore accompanied with the orchestra.
As he left the stage, Ma hugged or shook hands with many orchestra members, who were probably so thrilled to perform with him, and getting a hug must have been the jackpot.
And he gets to do it all again tomorrow.
Season Opening - Yo-Yo Ma
Concert Hall, Hong Kong Cultural Centre
Bizet Symphony in C
Dvorak Silent Woods, op. 58, no. 5
Zhao Lin Duo