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Yo-Yo Ma performs outside Russian embassy in DC

A cyclist noticed the famous musician playing in front of the embassy, by himself, Monday afternoon.

WASHINGTON — A famous musician took time to perform outside the Russian Embassy in a show of peace. Cellist Yo-Yo Ma was in D.C. Monday to perform at the Kennedy Center.

D.C. resident Ryan Stitt said he was riding by the Russian Embassy on his bike, along Wisconsin Avenue, when he saw the musician playing by himself on the sidewalk. Stitt, said at first he did a double-take, unsure as to whether the musician was Ma.

“I just asked him – point-blank – are you Yo-Yo Ma,” he said.

Stitt said Ma was very friendly to him. He then said Ma explained to him why he was at the embassy.

“The thing I remember him saying was ‘everyone has to do something,'” he said.

Ma happened to be in D.C. to hold a performance at the Kennedy Center later that night. He has been vocal about Russia's treatment of Ukraine on social media, retweeting requests for peace to Russia’s President Vladimir Putin.

“It’s meaningful for him, without an audience, to make a statement,” Stitt said.

WATCH NEXT: Demonstrators gather outside the Russian embassy to show support for Ukraine

Many of the people outside the embassy are from Ukraine and still have family there.

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