Yo-Yo Ma once sat with my grade school daughter while teaching and encouraging her fellow Minnesota Youth Symphony members tips on playing stringed instruments. It's a pinch or an inch finding the right notes, playing in tune. She thought him such a gentle man. Now an adult, she doesn't play her viola anymore but his kindness has left a lasting impression.
His work with Ennio Morricone is exquisite. This CD is sublime. One of my favorites!
This is the most emotional, beautifully written and performed music I've ever heard. Yo-Yo Ma is incredible! His expressive interpretations are beyond words, improving with time. With each passing year his performances go beyond the last. The combination of Ennio Morricones creative, romantic music and Yo-Yo is something not to miss. The tracks of Cinema Paradiso and The Mission are my favorites.
I purchased the CD within the past two weeks and, contrary to a couple of the reviewers (I considered the source!) I found the marriage of Yo Yo Ma's playing of the Morricone scores to be provocative and yet not intrusive. The sensitivity of Yo Yo Ma's interpretation is on a par with the great screen scores of Morricone: the subtle nuances really enhanced the orchestral settings! Yo Yo Ma does not dominate but rather supplies an embroidery to the scores. Being a romanticist who is a composer/performer/conductor/arranger, I find the CD continues to thrill me after more than a dozen hearings. I still discover new and innovative things that compel me to listen again and again. I have recommended this CD to all of my friends/colleagues and associates.
I never thought Yo-Yo Ma would do Gabriel's Oboe (Track 1) from THE MISSION justice, but I was wrong. There's a pureness to this version that makes it easier casual listening than the version(s) on the soundtrack CD itself. So no matter how much I love the theatrical "largeness" of the Original Soundtrack (not to mention the full choir), this is the version I grab for the CD player/iPod/whatever.
My two other recommendations are Main Theme from ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST (Track 11) and Ecstasy of Gold from THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGLY (Track 12). I suggest playing these consecutively as a single medley. Track 11 *WILL* bring tears to the manliest among us --particularly if you remember in the movie where Sergio Leone pulls the camera up to reveal the town rising.
I get the feeling "hardcore" classical fans would dismiss movie scores as commercial work. I truly believe Ennio Morricone transcends that. Even moreso than, say, John Williams, and on a different plane than a Danny Elfman. And I can't say more about the emotion Yo-Yo Ma brings to the table than what's already been discussed.
Having recently succumbed to Yo Yo Ma after a longtime love of Ennio Marricone I was excited to get this CD from Amazon. It is superb! All of the songs had to be recrafted by Morricone to suit Yo Yo Ma but it is a great listen as you sonically travel down memory lane through some of Maestro Moricone's musical marvels. "Gabriel's Oboe" from "The Mission" now becomes "Gabriel's Cello." I laugh as Yo Yo Ma bows his brains out on the "Ecstacy of Gold' from "The Good,The Bad, and The Ugly." I recommend this to all Yo Yo Ma and Morricone fans...a great listen. Soothing after a hard day!
The power of exquisite movie soundtracks is exhibited by superstar composer in this field Morricone. Couple this with the superstar celloist Ma and one gets this magnificent effort of Yo-Yo playing some of Morricone's best scores.
The power and majesty of Morricone's scores soar off this disc and especially Gabriel's Oboe & The Falls from The Mission as well as scores from Moses which I am unfamiliar with but will check it out. As other reviewers have already pointed out, the Nocture from The Lady Caliph is unbelievable in its escstacy and enchantment, here heightened by Ma's passionate intonation and interpretation. He glides and powers through this music with ease and focus and thus this collusion with the composer begats a magnficent sound.
Great music from groundbreaking movies, arranged for solo cello and orchestra. Selections are arranged roughly into suites by the director of each film (e.g. the Sergio Leone Suite, the Brian de Palma Suite, etc.) Ennio Morricone's work (recently celebrated with a Screen Actor's Guild Lifetime Achievement Award) more than sets the tone for each movie, it becomes a character in each movie -- when you hear a certain theme played, you are instantly transported back to that moment when you first heard it. A definite must have for film buffs, soundtrack enthusiasts and fans of Morricone or Ma.
This album is stunning. In my opinion it is a must buy.
Pros: >Excellent arrangement with absolutely stunning dynamic control. >Masterful recording, mixing and mastering. One of the best sounding classical CDs I own. >The accompanying ensemble is TOP NOTCH! >Yo-Yo was just having a really good day and you can feel his emotion in the music. I know that isn't a quantitative argument, but it is true.
Cons: I thought about this for a while and all I could come up with is maybe it is missing a solo track? Really I can't come up with anything bad about it.
This is an amazing collection - every single track is beautiful. Very diverse, since these are all from various movies, most of which you would not recognize. Some are lush romantic pieces, and others are driving numbers for western movies. I have given this CD to a number of people and they all love it. One was a teen who said he only liked metallica - and yet he loved this one and bought it for himself. You will not be disappointed on this one.