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Cage 100, Part 3: Stephen Drury

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Charles T. Downey, A Cage listeners may want to escape
Washington Post, September 10, 2012

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Cage, Works for Piano, Vol. 1, S. Drury
The composer Ernst Krenek diagnosed the problem of modernism in the 1950s. As translated into English a decade later, he wrote: “Performances of new music take place in an atmosphere dominated by specialists . . . [who] do not go to an art-work for a total emotional experience; they are interested in the demonstration of new materials, new principles of composition, procedures, methods. . . . This creates a danger of a radicalization that will accelerate continuously.”

Nowhere does Krenek seem to have hit the nail on the head more squarely than with the music of John Cage, which is being celebrated this week in a centennial festival at small museum venues throughout the city. As demonstrated by a brief survey of Cage’s work for piano, played masterfully and elegantly by Stephen Drury on Saturday afternoon at the Kreeger Museum, Cage’s compositions became more radical, enthralled to more-stringent theory, and less tolerable to the ear over the course of his career. [Continue reading]
Stephen Drury, piano
John Cage Centennial Festival
Kreeger Museum

Works by John Cage:
Prelude for Meditation (1944)
Music for Piano 1 (1952)
Variations II (1961, realization by David Tudor)
4'33" (1952)
In a Landscape (1948)
Etudes Australes, Book III (1974-75)
+ Philip Glass, Modern Love Waltz (1977, rev. 2012)

Cage 100, Part 1 and Part 2

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