johncage - to create a piece of music(“Williams Mix,”...

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John Cage “I have nothing to say and I am saying it.” Moved in a path opposite that of the postwar modernists. He only prescribes certain parameters of performance, leaving other aspects of the result to the performer or to the operation of chance, in some form or another. Music that makes deliberate use of indeterminacy, or chance, is called aleatoric music . Cage was a prime mover of the idea of aleatoric music. There is no silence . He composed 4’33” (1952) to demonstrate this and created a scandal. He later said that if we try to ignore sound, it becomes an annoyance, but if we accept it, it can be beautiful. “ 4’33” could be viewed as a spiritual exercise, a means of quieting the will so that an infinite realm of possibilities may be experienced” (Crawford 433). Tossed dice and / or threw coins or sticks to determine processes based on a Chinese book of wisdom, I-Ching . Also experimented with taped sounds assembled by similar chance procedures.
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Unformatted text preview: to create a piece of music (“Williams Mix,” 1952) . Related to a principle found in Indian philosophy: “Art is the imitation of Nature in her manner of operation.” Studied under Henry Cowell when he (Cage) was young. Took Cowell’s ideas of extended technique a step further by creating the “prepared” piano , which consisted of a regular piano with nuts, bolts, screws, and other sound altering objects attached to the strings. Sonatas and Interludes (1946-48). A philosopher as well as a composer, he believed that all we do is music and that we should be aware of the music already around us as much as trying to create more. A participant in the first “happenings” of the 1960s and a creator of work that was always cutting edge in part because his processes flew in the face of all Western art traditions....
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