January 6, 2009 / 2:34 AM / 11 years ago

Hyundai Super Bowl ad to feature music by Yo-Yo Ma

U.S. cellist Yo-Yo Ma holds his cello after receiving this year's Crystal Award at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos January 25, 2008. REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth

NEW YORK (Billboard) - Hyundai Motor Co. will use music by famed cellist Yo-Yo Ma in a Super Bowl XLIII television commercial that consumers can re-edit online, Billboard has learned.

Classical music fans aren’t the most obvious target for a National Football League telecast or an ad campaign with an online video editing component. But advertising agency Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, which produced the Hyundai spot, said it expects the ad to resonate with many of those watching the game. Last year’s game between the New York Giants and the New England Patriots drew a record 97.5 million viewers.

“I think the people that will respond to the Yo-Yo Ma piece when watching the Super Bowl won’t necessarily be classical music fans,” Goodby, Silverstein & Partners creative director Jim Elliot said. “Within the context of all the other advertising, which can be so chaotic that it almost becomes white noise, a quiet, gorgeous solo cello moment can be very arresting.”

A track from Ma’s 2002 “Bach’s Cello Suites Nos. 1, 5 & 6” (Sony Classical) will be heard in the spot for Hyundai’s Genesis sedan. The campaign will also allow consumers to visit the Hyundai Web site to edit the ad’s video and possibly the music heard in the spot. “Goodby was given free rein to take tracks off of the album,” Sony BMG Music Entertainment vice president of music licensing Kenny Ochoa said.

The Ma spot will mark Hyundai’s third advertising appearance at the Super Bowl, which won’t feature any ads this year from financially imperiled General Motors, a longtime Super Bowl advertiser.

“Some of this pullback offers a way to get clear space for our message,” Hyundai Motor America vice president of marketing Joel Ewanick said. “We see it is an opportunity, not as a time to retrench.”

Reuters/Billboard

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