Yo-Yo Ma & Children’s Choir Mob Chicago
In popular flash-mob fashion, cellist Yo-Yo Ma and the Chicago Children’s Choir popped up in unexpected spots around Chicago on January 29 to give impromptu performances of “Dona Nobis Pacem,” a traditional Latin canon that translates to “Give Us Peace.” The guerilla campaign was aimed at publicizing the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Citizen Musician initiative, which celebrates arts-based volunteerism. A “citizen musician” is one who donates his or her time to teaching, performing, or sharing music in any given community. The CSO is fueling the effort by featuring the stories and pictures of citizen musicians at citizenmusician.org.
“In music, you’re always working toward something that is bigger than yourself,” Ma says on the CSO website. “Success as a musician is not a product, but it’s a living thing. It’s reached when the performer can take the content they worked really hard at and they can transfer it through their techniques into the hearts and minds of someone else.”