As if there couldn’t be any more great music this weekend

At Hill Auditorium

Yo-Yo Ma (cello) and Kathryn Stott (piano)


At Hill Auditorium

The classical cellist Yo-Yo Ma will return to Hill Auditorium tomorrow night for his eighth University Musical Society performance. Ma started his classical study of the cello when he was just four years old and went on to study music at The Juilliard School and liberal arts at Harvard University. Ma’s ability to enthrall his audience with a variety of ethnically explorative musical styles is his most celebrated skill.

Known for the cultural diversity of his music, Ma has immersed himself in wide varieties of the art. From the distinct styles of native Chinese music to the sounds of Africa’s Kalahari bush people, Ma’s goal is to explore the imagination and transfer ideas across cultures.

Since his last UMS performance in early 2000, Ma garnered even more prestige with his designation as Peace Ambassador for the U.N. in 2006 by Secretary General Kofi Annan. The prolific artist has produced more than 75 albums in his lifetime, with over 15 Grammy Award winners among them.

A product of his collaboration with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Ma’s newest release is aptly named New Impossibilities, a title thematically relevant to his reputation as an artist always looking for new ways to evolve. Even now, 25 years after his first UMS performance, Ma’s search for personal growth marks his music.

Eric Eaton

At the Power Center

The opera written for the college town

“La Bohéme”

Today and Saturday at 8 p.m.

Sunday at 2 p.m.

$9 with student ID

At the Power Center

The Universiy’s Opera Theatre will present Puccini’s masterpiece, “La Bohéme,” tonight and tomorrow at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m.

The cast is composed of undergraduate and graduate students from the School of Music, Theatre and Dance as well as children from the Ann Arbor Youth Chorale and one near-celebrity professor. Professor Emeritus George Shirley will play the roles of Benoit and Alcindoro more than 45 years after debuting as Rodolfo, also in “La Bohéme,” in Woodstock, New York.

The story, focusing on a group of passionate young artists trying to live life to the fullest, will be familiar to anyone who’s seen “Rent.”

“These characters live and love fiercely,” director Kate Castaldo said. “By setting the opera in contemporary Paris, we pull in all the issues of today, which contribute to the artist motto of ‘there is no tomorrow.’ “

Ben Vanwagoner

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