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Yoyo Ma is one of the Most recognizable classical musicians today. He has been the foremost cellist of the world since the death of Mstislav Rostropovich 10 years ago. Like Renee Fleming he also dabbles in pop and other forms of music such as Bluegrass! He also plays traditional Chinese music. Bluegrass is a type of Country Music associated with Kentucky. It is called "Bluegrass" because Kentucky has so called blue glass.
I have several of his Cd's . He has collaborated with many other classical soloists and orchestras. He has won many Grammies in the classical field. He has a large classical repitoire.
He was born in Paris France in 1955 to Chinese parents. The family moved to America when he was seven. He was a child prodigy. He has played for Most US presidents since Eisenhower. He was at Obama's first inauguration. He has studied at Julliard in New York which is one of the top conservatories in America. he is also a goodwill ambassador and a humanitarian.
There are a lot of good classical music pieces that are not as popular. There are two cello concertos that tragically are not popular. The ones of Charles M arie Widor (1844-1937)(Opus#41) and that of Johan Svendsen (1840-1911) (Opus#7) Both works are beautiful. I can only find one CD each of each one. I wish would consider recording these works. Widor was knonw mainly for his organ works. Svendsen was mainly known as a violinist.
Ma has recorded many recent classical works such as the works by Danielpour, Kirchner and Rouse which was recorded with the Philadelphia Orchestra for the Sony label and I am listening to now as I wright this article.
Ma is also a great humanitarian good will ambassador. He has played for many of the US presidents regardless of their party. He has appeared on Sesame Street with Elmo. personally I like Cookie Monster the best.
The Classical music superstars of today have to branch out to other genres of music and be humanitarians. When I was younger I thought of classical musicians as far off distant people. They are not like rock stars who seem to be on drugs and have their lives followed by the tabloids.