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Yo-Yo Ma, Kathryn Stott – Songs From The Arc Of Life (2015) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Yo-Yo Ma, Kathryn Stott – Songs From The Arc Of Life (2015)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 1:07:54 minutes | 1,09 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Master, Official Digital Download – Source: Q0buz | Artwork: Digital booklet | © Masterworks

Cellist Yo-Yo Ma and pianist Kathryn Stott create a unique classical music experience with their new Sony Classical recording “Songs from the Arc”. This all-new recording also celebrates thirty years of friendship and collaboration in concerts and recordings for Ma and Stott. The album includes pieces they have frequently performed but never recorded, as well as a handful of discoveries.

Here’s a recording that amply demonstrates why Yo-Yo Ma has reached perhaps a wider public than any other serious classical musician. Over the course of his career he has vastly expanded the classical repertory while still staying true to its core. There has been a profound idealism, a high-mindedness, to what he does, combined with an ability to reach ordinary listeners that the greats of the past often mastered, but that is a rare commodity these days. He has rarely recorded short crowd-pleasers and it is typical of his genius that now, when he does so, he does it in an entirely compelling way. The core of the program consists of well-loved classical tunes, including one of the best-loved of all, the Bach-Gounod Ave Maria. But Ma varies the concept in two ways. The first has to do with the explicit program, depicting the “arc of life.” The pieces proceed from childhood to youth, adulthood, and finally “beau soir” and death, and the whole thing is nicely explored in the notes in the form of a conversation between Ma and his longtime accompanist Kathryn Stott. They make these rather generic pieces seem like the most personal thing in the world. Then, on top of this, Ma and Stott pick some pieces that aren’t common encores at all, such as the “Louange à l’éternité de Jésus,” from the Quartet for the end of time. These are exceptionally well chosen to modulate the moods of the arc of life, and by the final group of pieces even the skeptical may well find themselves hypnotized. Throw in superb sound from perhaps the premier American recording venue, Mechanics Hall in Worcester, Massachusetts, and you have an exceptional package that should rightly put Ma and Stott back at the top of the charts.

01 – Bach/Gounod: Ave Maria
02 – Brahms: Wiegenlied, Op. 49, No. 4: Lullaby
03 – Dvorák: Gypsy Songs, Op. 55, No. 4: Songs My Mother Taught Me
04 – Fauré: Papillon (Butterfly), Op. 77
05 – Gade: Tango Jalousie
06 – Schumann: Five Pieces in the Popular Style, Op. 102: I. Vanitas vanitatum
07 – Sibelius: Was it a Dream, Op. 37, No. 4
08 – Fauré: Apres un reve, Op. 7, No. 1
09 – Elgar: Salut d’Amour, Op. 12
10 – Gershwin: Three Preludes: Prelude No. 1
11 – Delius: Romance for Cello and Piano
12 – Kreisler: La Gitana
13 – Sollima: Il bell’Antonio, Tema III
14 – Saint-Saëns: Carnival of the Animals: The Swan
15 – Grieg: Elegiac Melodies: The Wounded Heart, Op. 34, No. 1
16 – Tchaikovsky: Valse Sentimentale, Op. 51, No. 6
17 – Messiaen: Quartet for the End of Time: Louange a l’Eternite de Jesus
18 – Debussy: Beau Soir
19 – Schubert: Ave Maria, Op. 52, No. 6 (Ellens Gesang III from Ein Fraulein vom See)

Recorded: March 28, 30 & 31, 2015 at Mechanics Hall in Worcester, MA.

Yo-Yo Ma – cello
Kathryn Stott – piano

Producer: Steven Epstein
Recording, mixing and mastering engineer: Richard King


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