March 2012

Ensemble member news

Tiny desk concert

Kayhan Kalhor is the most recent member of the Silk Road Ensemble to perform on NPR Music's Tiny Desk Concert series. This video was just released in celebration of the Persian New Year, which began at the vernal equinox. In her introduction, NPR's Anastasia Tsioulcas called this "a soulful, contemplative and beautifully moving improvisation in the mode of Nara." The video also gives some wonderful close views of the kamancheh.

Album roundup

The Knights, a New York-based orchestra that includes many Silk Road Ensemble musicians, just released its new album A Second of Silence on iTunes. It will come out on CD on April 3. The Knights are also currently finishing up a European tour.

Wu Tong's solo CD The Sound of My Heart features his own vocal music as well folk songs, and an array of Chinese, Western and Indian instruments. "The experience of playing in the Silk Road Ensemble led me to break the idea of genre," he says in this China Daily profile.

Reflecting on a life in music

Yo-Yo Ma with cello and microphoneYo-Yo Ma is giving a series of talks in California that will incorporate video, performance and discussion to address the role of music in today's global culture, from the Silk Road and beyond.

Monday, April 2, 2012   Redondo Beach, CA
Tuesday, April 3, 2012   Thousand Oaks, CA
Wednesday, April 4, 2012   Pasadena, CA
Thursday, April 5, 2012
Santa Barbara, CA

For more information, see the Distinguished Speaker Series of Southern California or the UCSB Arts & Lectures Series.

And in case you didn't hear about his latest flash mob performance, we found this video. Yo-Yo has been spearheading a "Citizen Musician" initiative in his role as creative consultant to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO)'s Institute for Learning, Access and Training. On March 19, he and renowned soprano Renee Fleming performed at a food court in Chicago's Thompson Center with CSO musicians and local high school students—all part of an effort to bring music out of the concert hall and into public life in unexpected ways.


Musicians talking in rehearsal
Common roots of music
Video and photos from our Asia tour
child wearing a dragon head
Silk Road connections
Photos from teaching artist visits
Yo-Yo Ma speaking Ensemble member news
Talks by Yo-Yo Ma, albums, performance videos
Shane Shanahan and Mark Suter playing percussion and smiling
Upcoming events
Concerts and summer institute