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Youth Music Culture Guangdong strikes a chord in 2021

Yo-Yo Ma and Long Yu are set to lead Youth Music Culture Guangdong’s virtual Special Event on 1 February. Follow their compelling three-part programme below and discover some of today’s most gifted young musicians

China’s surging passion for western classical music is reflected clearly in its support for the next generation of star performers. Youth Music Culture Guangdong (YMCG), although only in its fourth year, has already become a key fixture in China’s cultural calendar. The annual enterprise draws a faculty of world-renowned musicians and leading educators to work with an international cohort of musicians aged under 35. Its mission continues on Saturday 30th January with the YMCG 2021 Special Event, structured in the form of an online concert, masterclass and discussion.

A three-part programme

Proceedings begin at 8 pm Beijing time (12pm GMT; 7am EST) with a concert given by the Guangzhou Symphony Orchestra (GSO) and its conductor Long Yu. Their programme includes Prokofiev’s Second Violin Concerto and Beethoven’s Third Piano Concerto, performed respectively by two rising millennial stars, violinist Paloma So and pianist Serena Wang, and an arrangement of a Chinese classic by erhu master Liu Tianhua.

Legendary cellist and YMCG Artistic Director Yo-Yo Ma takes centre stage next via video link from Boston, Massachusetts for a deep-dive into the art of interpretation, geared towards young orchestra players. His ‘Inside the Practice Room’ presentation, complete with personal insights from a lifetime’s music-making, is sure to reveal fresh creative approaches to the art of performance. He is also set to join Long Yu, fellow professional musicians, alumni of past YMCG events, representatives of the Guangzhou Symphony Youth Orchestra and others for a transcontinental meeting of minds, informed by the theme of ‘harmony and equilibrium’.

All three Special Event sessions will be broadcast free of charge on the BBC Music Magazine website and YMCG’s social media channels, available to watch from 1st February.

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