The Silkroad Ensemble creates music that engages difference, sparking radical cultural collaboration and passion-driven learning to build a more hopeful world. Founded by cellist Yo-Yo Ma, the group has been called a “roving musical laboratory without walls” by the Boston Globe.
Silkroad musicians appear in many configurations and settings, from intimate groups of two and three in museum galleries to rousing complements of 18 in concert halls, public squares and amphitheaters. Off the stage, they lead professional development and musician training workshops, create residency programs in schools, museums and communities, and experiment with new media and genres to share Silkroad’s approach to radical cultural collaboration.
Silkroad musicians and composers hail from more than 20 countries, drawing on a rich tapestry of traditions to create a new musical language—a uniquely engaging and accessible encounter between the foreign and the familiar that reflects our many-layered contemporary identities. According to the Los Angeles Times has said, Silkroad’s "vision of international cooperation is not what we read in our daily news reports. Theirs is the better world available if we, like these extraordinary musicians, agree to make it one.”
Silkroad has performed in more than 100 cities in over 30 countries and recorded several albums; its 2016 release, “Sing Me Home,” won the Grammy Award for Best World Music Album. “The Music of Strangers”—a documentary about the ensemble, directed by the Academy Award-winning filmmaker Morgan Neville—premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2015 and was released worldwide in 2016.