In its tenth year, the Silk Road Project, initiated by acclaimed cellist Yo-Yo Ma, gathers multicultural musicians from around the world to play music together along the Silk Road, the expansive and ancient trade route that linked China to the West.
For centuries ideas, objects, and people traveled along the Silk Road, making it one of the most fluid and broad arenas of exchange the world has known and a major conduit of culture and civilization. The name Silk Road Project serves as a metaphor of the cultural exchange of ideas envisioned by the project.
In celebration of its 10th anniversary, the Silk Road Project is scheduled to present performances and programs in North America, Asia and Europe from 2008 to 2010.
The Project is also involved in a two-year educational program for middle-school students in New York City public schools. Its anniversary season began with the Silk Road Ensemble’s performance with Yo-Yo Ma of the United Nations Day Concert in October 2008.
In the video below, Nightly News anchor Brian Williams talks to Yo-Yo Ma about how, like the wood and varnish and bow of his cello, which come from every part of the globe, music can serve to bring together different cultures and generate an understanding and interest that may have been lacking — especially after 9-11.