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Work Title
Composed in 1977. Premiered in Seattle, September 10, 1977.
Ensemble Type
Work Length
For three players of water-filled conch shells and one conch-player using circular breathing and the sound of fire
This work was originally used as music for the eponymous choreographed piece by Merce Cunningham, with stage decors and costume design by Morris Graves. It was used again in 1983 for the Cunningham work entitled Inlets 2, with stage design by Mark Lancaster. In this work, players are instructed to tip amplified conch shells of varying sizes that have been partially filled with water in order to produce gurgling sounds. The work also calls for the sound of burning pine cones (live or recorded) and a single tone produced on a conch shell, used as a trumpet. The work was part of the “Sounday” event. This work exemplifies Cage’s interest in "contingency", in his definition meaning "improvisation using elements in which there is a discontinuity between cause and effect." Pools is a solo derivative of this work.
Peters Edition EP 66787