Jakarta. World-class cellist Yo-Yo Ma continously received a standing ovation at his first Jakarta concert on Friday.
In one sitting, Yo-Yo Ma brought Bach's "Six Cello Suites" to the Jakarta International Theatre at the JIExpo complex, in Central Jakarta. To Yo-Yo Ma, his unaccompanied performance of Bach's 300 years old music was not only to show his musical prowess, but was also a tool to break through the alarming social gaps.
This powerful message was able to move the audience into giving a standing ovation at the end of every suite.
The musician of 100 albums and 19 Grammy Awards also explained his personal interpretation of Bach's Six Cello Suites.
"Life is not easy and sometimes things go wrong. Sometimes, we suffer from trauma or the loss of life. But, the worst of all is the loss of dignity. This fifth suite is dedicated to those times," Yo-Yo Ma said.
The classical musician also seized the opportunity to get in touch with the Indonesian culture at his 25th stop of the Bach Project across the globe.
"When I first came to Indonesia, I learned about the words gotong royong, or teamwork, and adat (tradition). These words have inspired me in this cultural journey and showed how culture connects us," he said.
The cultural message of the concert was further emphasized with a collaborative stage with Indonesian R&B singer Dira Sugandi.
Accompanied with Yo-Yo Ma's cello, Dira sang to "Bengawan Solo".
This traditional song that was composed by Gesang Martohartono tells about Bnegawan Solo River in Java. Notable for its keroncong style, "Bengawan Solo" is widely known across Asia.
The concert was also continued with a day of action titled "T'angan: Shaping Our Culture" on Saturday.