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Yo-Yo Ma Quotes





After reaching 50, I began to wonder what the root of life is.
 

But an innovation, to grow organically from within, has to be based on an intact tradition, so our idea is to bring together musicians who represent all these traditions, in workshops, festivals, and concerts, to see how we can connect with each other in music.
 

Good things happen when you meet strangers.
 

I'm not likely to forget where I've been and what I've done and learned. I think it's just as important to play new instruments as to play new pieces. The old ones are getting scarcer and the new ones more and more wonderful.
 

I've been traveling all over the world for 25 years, performing, talking to people, studying their cultures and musical instruments, and I always come away with more questions in my head than can be answered.
 

It took me way beyond what I knew, into places of which I was totally scared, but as I became less frightened, I welcomed new ways of thinking and approaching something. It made me an infinitely richer person, and I think a better musician.
 

Many of the Central Asians know Russian, and Ted Levin speaks it fluently. I speak Chinese, but Mongolian is completely different, so we had to have translators.
 

Music has always been transnational; people pick up whatever interests them, and certainly a lot of classical music has absorbed influences from all over the world.
 

One is that you have to take time, lots of time, to let an idea grow from within. The second is that when you sign on to something, there will be issues of trust, deep trust, the way the members of a string quartet have to trust one another.
 

One of the most interesting aspects of the film project was collaborating with so many people - directors, filmmakers, and writers - over a five-year period. I learned that there are two components to this.
 

The tango is really a combination of many cultures, though it eventually became the national music of Argentina.
 

Things can fall apart, or threaten to, for many reasons, and then there's got to be a leap of faith. Ultimately, when you're at the edge, you have to go forward or backward; if you go forward, you have to jump together.
 

We may be coming to a new golden age of instrument making.
 

When you learn something from people, or from a culture, you accept it as a gift, and it is your lifelong commitment to preserve it and build on it.