7-Year-Old Cellist Prodigy Yo-Yo Ma's Debut Performance for President JFK
7-Year-Old Cellist Prodigy Yo-Yo Ma's Debut Performance for President JFK
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Leonard Bernstein introduces 7-year-old Yo-Yo Ma and his 11-year-old sister Yeou-Cheng Ma to Presidents John F. Kennedy and Dwight D. Eisenhower at "An American Pageant of the Arts," on November 29, 1962. The purpose of the event was to raise funds for the National Cultural Center, begun under Eisenhower's administration and encouraged under Kennedy's. The prodigious duo performed the first movement of the Concertino No. 3 in A Major, by Jean-Baptiste Breval.

Two months after President Kennedy's assassination in November 1963, Congress passed and President Johnson signed into law legislation renaming the National Cultural Center as a "living memorial" to John F. Kennedy. 

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