On Wednesday, September 5, 2012, the late composer and music theorist John Cage would have turned 100. Here's a list of events around the world commemorating his life and work.

17 Responses to “John Cage turns 100 this week. Celebrate silently for four minutes, thirty-three seconds.”

  1. gnp says:

    Or for a longer celebration, there’s 8’17″, the dance remix version.

    • Wreckrob8 says:

      There are two dance remixes I know of – a techno remix and a dubstep remix (but why?). But there is also a 30 second remix produced as a one off for a British radio programme. That’s the one to celebrate with I think.

    • Wreckrob8 says:

      My phone is messing with me again!

  2. Maverick says:

    If you do celebrate with a stupid performance of 4’33″, please be aware of and listen to what’s happening around you so you’re not completely wasting your time.

    • That’s actually the point of the piece.  The piece is not 4’33″ of SILENCE, it’s 4’33″ of the background noise of the concert hall (or wherever you are) without the orchestra playing.  It’s meant to draw attention to the sounds that surround us every day that we ignore as “noise.”

  3. randall pollok says:

    I’ve gotta comment on this’un. I’m with Maverick on this and more -=- John cage was one of the great speakers and thinkers on the philosophical side of music and sound, and he is often reduced to jokes about 4’33 at this point, 20 years after his death. Sadly, most of his work and writings can’t be reduced to a single diamond hard sound bite. 4’33 is just too iconic to ignore. I don’t fault BB or anyone for kicking off talks on the man with 4’33, but it is always nice to see a nod to anymore of his output at all, and to emphasize that the point of 4’33 is not silence, but ambient sound and environment. It -is- a bit jokey too, and there is some humor woven into the performance directions and the reception of the work inevitably involves justifiable giggles, but there is more.

    everybody, go give this a listen to and appreciate the effort behind it. Replicating a javanese gamelan (drum ensemble) by altering the working of a piano.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VYsx5Di3bso

  4. Chentzilla says:

    There’s the joke I wanted to make, right there in the title.

    Also, thanks to the guys above (not to be mixed with The Guy Above) for enlightening me on the purpose of 4’33.

  5. kiptw says:

    I checked out a disk of his sonatas and interludes for prepared piano. Listened to it. Next time I listen to prepared pianos, it’ll probably be Ferrante & Teicher’s “Soundblast” again. The invention of the prepared piano was a good one, anyway.

  6. Amelia_G says:

    Seattle: Wed. Sept. 5, 7:30 p.m., Chapel Performance Space, 4th fl., 4649 Sunnyside Ave. N

    “Join Pacific Rims Percussion Quartet (Gunnar Folsom, Paul Hansen, Matt Kocmieroski, Robert Tucker) Pacific Rims Percussion Quartet for 2 works written 49 years apart on this tribute to composer John Cage on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of his birth.

    “Credo in Us, (1942) – a prime example of Cage’s early percussion work, strictly and conventionally notated, followed by Four4, (1991) – in which the group chooses their own sounds and performance styles to time parameters dictated by Cage.

    “Admission: $5–15”

  7. IamInnocent says:

    I read ‘music terrorist’. :D

  8. Tchoutoye says:

    First of all, Cage does not turn 100 this week. And that’s because he’s dead.

    Secondly, I know modern culture demands lazy cliches but I prefer not to celebrate Cage by reducing his work to a single stereotype. If I celebrate Cage at all, it will be noisily, in the manner of his Williams Mix.

  9. reviewstew says:

    A more comprehensive list of worldwide Cage centenary celebrations here:
    http://johncage.org/2012/events.html

  10. He was great on “Emergency!”

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