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Work Title
Music for Marcel Duchamp
Date
Composed in 1947.
Ensemble Type
Solo
Work Length
5 minutes
Instrumentation
For solo prepared piano.
Comments
This work was originally written for the Duchamp portion of Hans Richter's film entitled Dreams That Money Can Buy. The composition evokes timbres and harmonies of Asian music, as well as the music of Erik Satie, i.e. it is static, meditative, and timeless. The music uses few tones, muted by weather stripping (seven pieces), a piece of rubber, and one bolt. The soft materials avoid fluctuations in resonance. This was important for Cage because the music had to be recorded, and in the first recordings Cage commented on "how poor the piano [...] sounded". The rhythmic structure is 11 x 11 (extended): 2-1-1-3-1-2-1. One new idea in this work is evident in Cage’s use of silence, heard especially in the last part, where 7 x 2 bars of music are followed by 2 bars of silence. These repetitions create tension and constitute a new dimension in Cage's music, stepping away as they do from his usual rhythmic propulsions. This work is available in the C.F. Peters compilation "Prepared Piano Music 1940 - 47, Volume 2" (catalog number noted).
Publication
Peters Edition EP 67886b
Recordings (click for details)
John Cage: The Works for Percussion 4 (The Complete John Cage Edition, Volume 52)
Gamelan Cage: John Cage's Prepared Piano Pieces on Balinese Gamelan
John Cage - Complete Piano Music Vol. 1-10
Cage: As it is
John Cage in Norway
Shutter Island (Music From the Motion Picture)
Margaret Leng Tan Sorceress of the New Piano
The Perilous Night, Aki Takahashi plays John Cage
The Complete John Cage Edition, Volume 37 Complete Short Works for Prepared Piano
John Cage: Music for Keyboard 1935-1948 Morton Feldman: The Early Years
John Cage Complete Music for Prepared Piano
Dreams That Money Can Buy Hans Richter
Margaret Leng Tan Sorceress of the New Piano - Japanese Edition
EQUIvoci - Cage e Dowland Maurizio Grandinetti: guitar
The Works for Piano 4
nova musicha n.1 John Cage
John Cage - Music for Prepared Piano Vol.2
John Cage - Music for Prepared Piano Vol.2
Tribute 2000 - René Eckhardt
John Cage Jede Menge Klavier
John Cage
John Cage - Works for Prepared Piano
John Cage - Complete Piano Music Vol. 1 The Prepared Piano 1940-1952
Jack Behrens Water Music
In a Landscape - John Cage
Works for prepared piano / Cage
American Piano Music of the 20th century: J.F.K. in memoriam, XI.22.1963
John Cage - Sonata XIII - Music for Marcel Duchamp - Song Books I-II - Empty Words III
nova musicha n.1 John Cage
Daniele Lombardi - spartito preso
Nocturne; Six Melodies; Amores; A Valentine out of Season; Music for Marcel Duchamp
A Valentine out of Season / Aki Takahashi
A Valentine out of Season
John Cage - Sonata XIII - Music for Marcel Duchamp - Song Books I-II - Empty Words III
Nova Musicha Series - John Cage
John Cage: Music for Keyboard 1935-1948
John Cage: Music for Keyboard 1935 - 1948
John Cage: Musique pour Piano Vol.II
John Cage: Music for Keyboard 1935 - 1948
John Cage: Music for Keyboard 1935 - 1948
JOHN CAGE A tribute
John Cage: Silence Happening
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