It’s always amazing to see the International Contemporary Ensemble. It’s just wonderful to be able to experience contemporary composers within a live concert. I was excited to hear some John Cage and I was not familiar with Pierre Boulez, so I was looking forward to the concert.
I think by far, the most exciting to me was John Cage’s famous 4’33” which I’ve only read about about before, but never participated in in a formal concert setting like this. Funny how people’s general awareness of this piece has changed its content a lot since it was first performed. (certainly a lot of people held-off on their coughing until the end.)
My second fave of the evening was also a John Cage, Radio Music, for eight radios (1956). Once again something I’ve read about, but not seen performed live. So two fantastic firsts for me. This one a little more successful than the first in my mind. It also changes with the times and remains current so long as there are radio broadcasts (who knows how long that will last for, lol). I was actually surprised by how little was taken up by commercials, but even that adds a nice layer to the tapestry of sounds.
In any case, always enjoy seeing ICE at the MCA Chicago, and looking forward to the next one.
correspondence: cage and boulez
october 6, 2012
museum of contemporary art