Yo-Yo Ma and the acclaimed Silk Road Ensemble perform works commissioned by the Silk Road Project along with traditional pieces from the Silk Road lands.
In June 2012, 16 musicians from the U.S., India, Korea, Israel, Spain, Iran, Switzerland, Japan, and China converged for a week at Tanglewood, the Boston Symphony Orchestra's idyllic summer retreat in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts. The occasion: two concerts to open Tanglewood's 75th season that were filmed by BFMI.
This week also marked the Silk Road Ensemble's 12th anniversary. It was here at Tanglewood in 2000 that this ever-evolving group of musicians first came together from hometowns around the world to explore what an open meeting of cultures could sound like.
"Then we were strangers," said the artistic director Yo-Yo Ma, "and many of us had only the language of music in common. Over the years, we've returned several times to develop new music. So Tanglewood is, if you will, the Ensemble's birthplace, and it remains an inspiration for us."
That week, an uncommon heat wave made for some sweltering rehearsals, but spirits stayed high and the threat of showers held off on the evenings of the performances. Grateful lawn audiences stretched far up the hill past the open doors of Seiji Ozawa Hall.
Galician bagpiper Cristina Pato brought her gaita into the woods to film for a title sequence. The cloud of mosquitos she had to walk through likely won't show up on film—nor will the red ants that climbed up the steadycam operator's leg while he filmed. Happily for our audience, he bravely held his shot.
The concert documentary is made by Morgan Neville from Tremolo Productions, an award-winning documentary filmmaker who specializes in cultural subjects.
The concert film comes together with 120 minutes of pure concert