World-renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma gave a surprise concert at the Berkshire Community College during an observation period after receiving his second dose of COVID-19 vaccine over the weekend.
The 65-year-old musician was waiting at the vaccination site for his 15-minute observation period on Saturday when he decided to “give something back,” Richard Hall of the Berkshire COVID-19 Vaccine Collaborative told The Berkshire Eagle.
Ma started playing for the staff at the vaccination center and people waiting for their observation period. Hall described the impromptu performance as a “very special” concert to end the clinic day.
State Rep. William “Smitty” Pignatelli praised Ma for “bringing hope and optimism through his beautiful music.”
The 18-time Grammy award winner serenaded everyone at the center with Franz Schubert’s “Ave Maria” and the prelude to Bach’s “Cello Suite No. 1” during his surprise mini-concert, CBS News reported.
“Many people were moved to tears,” Jonah Sykes, associate director of marketing and communications at Berkshire Community College, said. “It was an exceptional moment at the end of a long day of giving shots.”
March 13, the day when Ma received his second shot, was the first anniversary of #SongsOfComfort, an effort he launched on Twitter where he posts a series of live recordings to bring comfort to those stuck during the quarantine period.
In these days of anxiety, I wanted to find a way to continue to share some of the music that gives me comfort. The first of my #SongsOfComfort: Dvořák – “Going Home”
Stay safe. pic.twitter.com/S28w6OlXiZ
— Yo-Yo Ma (@YoYo_Ma) March 13, 2020
“In these days of anxiety, I wanted to find a way to continue to share some of the music that gives me comfort,” Ma wrote in his tweet last year. “The first of my #SongsOfComfort: Dvořák – ‘Going Home’.”