yo-yo ma

yo yo ma bw

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yo yo ma site

23 min in – speaking at Nancy Hanks –

Ted Kennedy put in my mind – the idea of a musician doing public service

musicians are trained to pay attention to the biggest possible picture as well as the smallest detail

7 bill people, speaking 6000 languages, over 200 countries – how to share our planet? what role can the arts/culture/humanity play in finding solution to dilemma – empathy deficit et al – each one of us can contribute to a solution – art for life’s sake.

what lessons can we learn from observing:

1. nature

2. human realm

3. sciences and arts

experts say collaborative, flexible, imaginative, innovative

edge effect – where two ecosystems meet – you find the greatest amount of life as well as the most new life forms

who am i and how do i fit in the world

the ability to transcend physical/geographical limitations

in the presence of kennedy & eonard bernstein – yet – it’s danny kay who comes down to my level – the crucial edge that divides adult from child

meet people

music 35 min in –

lil buck (charles riley) – form of dance – jucken, he’s 24 yrs old, for the last 10 yrs he has spend 10 hours a day practicing

christina patoan artist who creates her own edge effect – bagpipe, piano, rockstar in spain

sociologists tell us – societies are powered by 3 engine:

1. politics (structure/stability/security) – currency – distribution of power

2. economics (trade/food/roof) – currency – creation of wealth

3. culture (who we are/how we feel/things that give life meaning) – currency – trust

fuel for each of these engines: knowledge.

knowledge confers power in status in politics

application of knowledge results in wealth creation

in culture gives us perspective and the capacity for empathy

societies run better if they fire at all 3 cylinders, and esp where they intersect

art for life’s sake – musicians spend years learning technique – but the point of art is always to transcend technique

new path for healing – veterans work and music 

55 min in – how i came to the idea of citizen musician – 2006

yo yo ma presents

if african american or latino – 2.5 out of 100

i cannot be a proud citizen as long as this is true, i know i can’t fix it, but i have to find some way to respond

so i’m thinking – what possible skills do i have that could be useful in addressing this.. everything i do in music involves: collab, flexibility, imagination, innovation; so today i work with 3 organizations to share these…

chicago public schools – implements newly adopted arts as core subject in nations 3rd largest school district for first time ever

[imagine if this freedom – without the same frames of education, ie: math/science curriculum to graduate; graduate to go to college; go to college to be successful]

silk road

1:07 – enter feynman – [love the video – would love to find it]

stem to steam – [but imagine if we don’t even confine it to steam]

oscillating between empathy and critical thinking… another way to live on the edge

1:14 – bach’s – completion can only be achieved through our combined efforts.. a brief moment to be in touch with the sublime

melody – like feynman’s flower

the base – the ground, our roots, our values, the life-giving force that makes a flower bloom

will yourself to sustain in your ears the notes i cannot sustain