Yo-Yo Ma
(c) Jason Bell

For the last three years in January, Yo-Yo Ma and some of his closest collaborators work with students in an intense week of education, collaboration, and exploration at Youth Music Culture Guangdong (YMCG) in Guangzhou, China. 2020’s theme focuses on the musical center of Bach and outreach into local communities.

YMCG Artistic Director, Yo-Yo Ma says: “In times of change and uncertainty, people often turn to the wisdom of those who have gone before us. Whether philosophers or artists, the ‘ancients’ can often see our situation more clearly than we can ourselves, reminding us of the eternal truths about the world and humanity that connect us regardless of whatever our current difficulty may be. Johann Sebastian Bach is one of those ‘ancients.’ Even though he lived almost 300 years ago and never traveled more than 250 miles from the place of his birth, he wrote music that still speaks to us today, no matter where we live. Bach is able to do this because he is a ‘scientist-artist,’ someone who tells us the objective truth about ourselves, but does so with real empathy and understanding. And in that truth, we find a place where we can meet and understand each other.”

The young musicians who participate in next year’s 9-day workshop – January 10-18, 2020 – will explore the questions of how the music of Bach, a fundamental composer of Western classical music, is relevant in the 21st century; how his music can keep pace with the times, become integrated into the present, and inspire the future.

Events for the 2020 YMCG participants include lectures, sessions with a few students and one faculty member where students can focus on questions about technique, interpretation, or the life of a musician, master classes with faculty members and Yo-Yo Ma as well as relaxed events in which musicians can share a meal and read chamber music together.

In collaboration with maestros Long Yu and Michael Stern, Yo-Yo Ma curates more than a dozen respected instructors for the intense week of learning.

2020 Youth Music Culture Guangdong applications are open now until October 25, 2019. Young musicians from all countries aged 18-35 are welcome to apply. Please visit the official website at www.ymcgchina.com for more information.

  • Pizzicato

  • Archives