Yo-Yo's Pianist Soft-Pedals Milligate

1/28/2009 4:15 AM PST
Yo-Yo MaThe piano virtuoso who played with Yo-Yo Ma and Itzhak Perlman at their now-much-maligned Inauguration gig wants everyone to step off.

Gabriela Montero says if the all-star quartet had tried to play for real, "It would have been a disaster ... It would absolutely have been a pathetic way to lead a president into his oath." They could've made an announcement, but why would you do that right before such a big moment, she asks?

As for Yo-Yo, here is evidence of how precious his $3.3 mil Montagnana cello is: He has to buy a first-class plane ticket just for the instrument.