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Chamber Music - Released August 17, 2018 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Editor's Choice
What do you mean, “Six evolutions”? It’s an intriguing title, almost esoteric… The cellist Yo-Yo Ma, who needs no introduction after a worldwide career of some fifty years, pens here his third (and ultimate, according to him) recording of Bach’s Solo Cello Suites. The first, while he was in his twenties, gave rise to enthusiasm, the second—in his forties—gave rise to emotion, so what will this final vision give rise to, now that he is in his late sixties? Serenity and joy, probably, and the completion of a triple discographic evolution. That being said, we still cannot explain the “Six evolutions”, and you will have to dive into a small corner of the accompanying booklet to find an indication, giving little more information, it is true, since it comes with no clarification: 1) Nature is at play, 2) Journey toward the light, 3) Celebration, 4) Construction/Development, 5) The struggle for hope, and 6) Epiphany. Well… Whatever it be, and despite what he said—and the amazing quality of this interpretation—let’s meet in 2038 to find out if he doesn’t decide to give a new interpretation in his eighties! © SM/Qobuz
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Classical - Released September 18, 2015 | Masterworks

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4 étoiles de Classica
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Trios - Released September 15, 2017 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or / Arte
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Classical - Released July 20, 2010 | Sony Classical

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Classical - Released April 7, 2017 | Nonesuch

Hi-Res Booklet
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Classical - Released July 20, 2010 | Sony Classical

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Classical - Released July 20, 2010 | Sony Classical

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Classical - Released June 21, 2015 | Sony Classical

Booklet
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Film Soundtracks - Released November 21, 2005 | Sony Classical

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Classical - Released August 11, 2014 | Sony Classical

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Classical - Released April 23, 2013 | Sony Classical

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Classical - Released April 6, 2004 | Sony Classical

Unlike the recent Classic Yo-Yo, really a single-disc sampler of the recorded work of our true superstar cellist, The Essential Yo-Yo Ma purports to be something more -- the Yo-Yo Ma album to own if you're going to own just one. Where Classic Yo-Yo more or less alternated track by track between Ma's straight classical and crossover music, The Essential Yo-Yo Ma devotes one of its two discs to the classics and the other to a generous sampling of music Ma has explored from around the popular sphere and around the world, including selections from his Silk Road Project and from his disc devoted to the music of Ennio Morricone. There's a lot to be said for this approach; Ma has really maintained parallel classical and crossover careers, and when it comes to actualy mixing things up on the concert stage, others have been bolder than he. The crossover second disc is nicely sequenced and remastered, concluding with a previously unreleased arrangement of "I Could Have Danced All Night" as a bonus track. It's a very reasonable greatest-hits group. The first disc is less successful as a representation of Ma's abilities in traditional repertoire. No complete multi-movement works are included, and most of the performances included are of the encore type. The disc moves more or less chronologically, beginning with a group of Bach and Vivaldi melodies (though Ma's involvement with Vivaldi is underrepresented by the single Four Seasons movement included) and proceeding to Romantic and late Romantic works. Many of these pieces (Gershwin's Prelude No. 1, Rachmaninov's Vocalise, Massenet's Méditation) are arrangements, and a few could have been sacrificed to make room for the consistent warmth that Ma brings to, say, Dvorák's cello concerto. Still, there's nothing here that makes this set anything less than a good introduction to a great musician, one who connects with audiences in a way that was second nature to the famed virtuosi of the past.
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Classical - Released August 19, 2002 | Sony Classical

This release covers half (Suites No. 1, No. 5, and No. 6) of Yo-Yo Ma's first recording of the Bach Cello Suites made in 1983. At the time, he was still a newer talent to audiences, but had already impressed teachers and listeners with his musicality and technical skills. The Bach suites were pieces he had been learning all his life and were one of the things that helped him make his mark as a student at Harvard. Ma's reading of the suites is more stylized than Bach purists might like, but at the same time, it is entirely musical and enjoyable. His choices of where and when to use rubato and how much are completely subjective, but done for the sake of creating depth and shape in the music in a way that speaks to him and the listener. The Allemande and Courante of the Suite No. 5 are told like stories, with moments of gravity, excitement, and reflection. There are also moments of carefree dancing, particularly in the Courante and Gigue of Suite No. 1, and in the Gavotte and Gigue of No. 6, where he uses his bow to play into the strings, giving the music a slightly rustic character. Ma's musical sense comes through clearly in this recording of the suites, which demonstrates why his abilities garnered much-deserved attention when it was originally released.
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Classical - Released October 10, 2008 | Sony Classical

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Classical - Released July 16, 2010 | Sony Classical

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Classical - Released April 7, 2017 | Nonesuch

Booklet
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Classical - Released July 25, 2003 | Sony Classical

As a cultural ambassador to the world, Yo-Yo Ma has immersed himself in the native music of many countries and taken away charming souvenirs of his musical explorations that he shares openly and without affectation. The chief characteristic of Ma's approach is his showcasing of other talents, with a modesty and generosity on his part that makes these performances all the more appealing. In Obrigado Brazil, Ma shares the spotlight with musicians of the highest caliber, including bossa nova singer Rosa Passos, guitar duo Sergio and Odair Assad, clarinetist Paquito d'Rivera, pianist Kathryn Stott, and percussionist Cyro Baptista, among many other stars. All the performers display deep feeling, energy, and conviviality, no doubt inspired by Ma's infectious goodwill and openhearted playing. Whether he engages the listener with popular numbers, such as the songs of Antonio Carlos Jobim and Pixinguinha, or with more classically tailored pieces by Heitor Villa-Lobos, Camargo Guarneri, and Egberto Gismonti, Ma offers a broad sampling of Brazil's diverse musical styles. From sorrowful choros to lively sambas, the spectrum of the country's music is well represented, and there is something here to please any armchair traveler. Sony's recording is excellent, with special attention directed to capturing instrumental color.
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Classical - Released May 12, 2017 | Masterworks

Booklet
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Classical - Released October 1, 2001 | Columbia