March 28, 2023

Led by Music Director Osmo Vänskä, the concert marks Yo-Yo Ma’s first performance with the Orchestra in 15 years

Yo-Yo Ma

MINNEAPOLIS (Feb. 3, 2017) — Superstar cellist Yo-Yo Ma will perform a one-night-only concert with the Minnesota Orchestra on Tuesday, June 13, 2017, marking his first performance with the Orchestra since he launched the institution’s Centennial Season in 2002.

Led by Music Director Osmo Vänskä, the performance will feature Ma as soloist in two works: Haydn’s Cello Concerto in C major—a piece that was lost for nearly two centuries until its rediscovery in 1961―and Dvořák’s lyrical Silent Woods. The program will also feature the Orchestra in works by Smetana, Mendelssohn and Liszt.

The special concert will be performed at the Orchestra’s home venue in downtown Minneapolis, Orchestra Hall, on Tuesday, June 13, at 7:30 p.m., with ticket prices ranging from $50 to $175. Advance tickets will first be available for renewing and new Classical Season subscribers with the purchase of a 2017-18 season package, beginning March 20.  Single concert tickets will be available on May 12 online at and by phone at 612-371-5656.  A select number of concert tickets will also be available as benefits for patrons of the Orchestra’s 2017 Symphony Ball.  For further purchasing details, refer to the section at the conclusion of this press release.

Yo-Yo Ma, Creative Artist

One of the world’s greatest cellists, Yo-Yo Ma has built a multi-faceted career as an orchestral soloist, recording artist, chamber musician, educator, commissioner of new cello work and an explorer of musical forms outside the Western classical tradition. He currently serves as a Creative Consultant to the Chicago Symphony, and in March 2016 he was appointed Artistic Advisor at Large to the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts as part of an initiative to encourage the idea of creative citizenship. Over the course of his career, Ma has premiered new cello works by composers from Elliott Carter and Osvaldo Golijov to Bright Shen, Tan Dun and John Williams.

In 1998, Ma established Silkroad, a non-profit that works to connect the world through the arts. Under Ma’s direction, Silkroad presents performances by the Silk Road Ensemble and develops new music, partnerships, education programs and cross-disciplinary collaborations. More than 80 new musical and multimedia works have been commissioned for the Silk Road Ensemble from composers around the world. In 2009, Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble appeared at Orchestra Hall.

Ma remains one of the best-selling recording artists in the classical field and his discography numbers over 100 albums, including 18 Grammy Award winners.  Many of his recordings defy easy categorization, such as The Goat Rodeo Sessions, with Edgar Meyer, Chris Thiele and Stuart Duncan, which received the 2013 Grammy for Best Folk Album. His most recent release,Sing Me Home recorded with the Silk Road Ensemble, was released in April 2016 as the companion album to the documentary film, The Music of Strangers.

Widely known in popular culture, Ma has reached young people through appearances on Arthur, Mister Roger’s Neighborhood and Sesame Street. His long list of awards includes the 2010 Presidential Medal of Freedom and a 2011 Kennedy Center Honor.

40-Year History with the Minnesota Orchestra

Ma has enjoyed a relationship with the Minnesota Orchestra that spans 40 years. He first performed with the Orchestra in 1977, under then-Music Director Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, playing the same work that is featured on his upcoming program, Haydn’s Cello Concerto in C major. He went on to make 11 additional appearances with the Minnesota Orchestra, performing with each of its music directors over the decades: Sir Neville Marriner, Edo de Waart and Eiji Oue. The June 13 performance bears a special distinction; it marks Ma’s first appearance with the Minnesota Orchestra that will be led by Music Director Osmo Vänskä.

Minnesota Orchestra Classical Concert

Tuesday, June 13, 2017, 7:30 p.m. / Orchestra Hall

Minnesota Orchestra
Osmo Vänskä
, conductor
Yo-Yo Ma, cello

SMETANA                           The Moldau, No. 2 from Má vlast (My Homeland)
HAYDN                                Cello Concerto in C Major
MENDELSSOHN                Overture to A Midsummer Night’s Dream
DVOŘÁK                             Silent Woods for Cello and Orchestra
LISZT                                    Les Préludes, Symphonic Poem No. 3


Advance tickets to this performance will first be available to renewing and new Classical Season subscribers with the purchase of a 2017-18 season package, beginning March 20. For more information, visit or call 612-371-5642. Tickets will also be available as benefits for patrons of the Orchestra’s 2017 Symphony Ball. For more information on patron tickets, visit

Single tickets will be available for the concert beginning May 12, 2017 online at, or by calling 612-371-5656 or 800-292-4141. Tickets can be purchased in person at the Orchestra Hall Box Office, 1111 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis (open Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and beginning two hours before all ticketed performances); and at the Minnesota Orchestra Administrative Office, International Centre, 5th floor, 920 Second Avenue South, Minneapolis (open Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.). For more information, call 612-371-5656, or visit For subscriptions, call 612-371-5642 or visit For groups of 10 or more, call 612-371-5662.

All programs, artists, dates, times and prices subject to change.

This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.

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