Thursday, September 29, 2011

"Crouching Tiger"

On today's date in 2000, Yo-Yo Ma premiered Chinese composer Tan Dun's "Crouching Tiger" Concerto, fashioned from Tan's Oscar-winning film score for Ang Lee's popular film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Tan was a young student of traditional Chinese music when he heard  Beethoven's Fifth Symphony for the first time. The occasion was a Philadelphia Orchestra concert in Beijing during the first American symphony orchestra tour of Communist China after the famous visit of Nixon. Tan decided on the spot to become a composer himself, and ever since his works—including an opera, The First Emperor, which he conducted at the Met—have combined elements of East and West. From the Silk Road to the Esterhazy court to a down-home Appalachian fiddle stomp, Yo-Yo Ma does it all. You can survey our CDs by this musical ambassador and polymath here. (And for today and tomorrow only, you can take 10% off your order by inserting the magic number 11569 into the appropriate slot at checkout!)
In the first video below you can hear an excerpt from the film score with Ma on cello; the second is a portion of the concerto by the Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra with Andre Gaskins on cello.


  1. Ah Yo-Yo Ma, a musical genius! The music world is a much better place with him in it.