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Yo-Yo Ma says he is reassessing all that he knows / 99.5WCRB 'CD of the Week'

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Now at age 62, cellist Yo-Yo Ma says that he is reassessing all that he knows, including Bach's six suites for solo cello. He just made his third and final recording of them – and it's WCRB: Boston - CD of the Week.

Many musicians have re-recorded their most deeply loved music at different times in their lives. Cellist Yo-Yo Ma is no exception to that, and he has turned to Bach's cello suites for a third and last time. Last December, he called upon all that his life has revealed to him, and in an empty and perfect musical space – Mechanics Hall in Worcester – he let them unfold in the way that he understands them now.

This time, something indescribable has entered his playing. He's found an even more natural and poignant way of launching the phrases, still with restraint that brings certain endings to an almost painfully beautiful and intimate hush. He has been playing the first suite since his father taught it to him, measure by measure, when he was just four, and even then he felt a deep pleasure in its energy and its silences. Now, at 62, he seems to see the music's larger meaning, and he lets it take flight as though he is letting go in some way – touched by its wisdom and in love with the comfort it brings.   

Watch video of Yo-Yo talking about with conductor Michael Stern