World-renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma’s multi-faceted career is testament to his enduring belief in culture’s power to generate trust and understanding.
With partners from around the world and across disciplines, Ma, who has recorded more than 100 albums (including 19 Grammy Award winners), creates programs that stretch the boundaries of genre and tradition to explore music-making as a model for the cultural collaboration essential to a strong society. Expanding upon this belief, in 1998 Ma established Silkroad, a collective of artists from around the world who create music that engages their many traditions.
Among his many roles, Ma is the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Judson and Joyce Green Creative Consultant; artistic advisor at large to the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts; artistic director of the annual Youth Music Culture Guangdong festival; and UN Messenger of Peace.
Ma has received numerous awards, including the National Medal of the Arts, the World Economic Forum’s Crystal Award, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, Kennedy Center Honors, and the J. Paul Getty Medal Award. He has performed for eight American presidents.
Ma is a graduate of the Juilliard School, where he studied with Leonard Rose, and Harvard University.