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Soup for John Cage

Preparing soup for John Cage's Empty Words

I promise this won't become a cooking blog! But if John Cage can specify the meal to be served during Empty Words (see below), I can share the recipe I prepared when we listened last Saturday. We followed his menu throughout the evening, and I think it provided a little extra incentive to stick with the program. This garbanzo and lentil soup is a variation on one from Catherine S. Katz, PhD, coauthor of Dr. David Katz's Flavor-Full Diet(Rodale). (more…)

— Linda Hutchins, July 6, 2012 / 2 Comments

Sounds Surround Silence: John Cage's Empty Words

When John Cage performed Empty Words thirty years ago, I thought it called for a party. KBOO was broadcasting the twelve-hour performance live through the night; I hosted a slumber party to listen to it with my friends. In the years since, I've often wondered what we heard that night. I was still an engineer, still twenty-something. I had yet to go to art school, and yet to develop my interest in new music. What did my friends and I expect, and what did we miss—when, after an hour or so of dutiful listening, we turned the dial to something more festive?

I had the opportunity to revisit that experience last Saturday night, thanks to a recreation of the performance at Bard College's Fisher Center, WGXC's broadcast of that event, and the wonders of live internet streaming. I invited friends again, including two guests from my original party, plus another who'd spent an evening with Cage in the late 1960's. (I still see this as an experience to share with others.) (more…)

— Linda Hutchins, July 3, 2012 / Leave a Comment