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File under: Performance Art


Spoken Music Concert At Paula Cooper Gallery

Label: Dog W/A Bone

Format: CD

Genre: Sound Art

In stock


Originally issued on Dog W/A Bone in 2002. The S.E.M. Ensemble's Spoken Music Concert took place on Tuesday, February 6, 1990, at the Paula Cooper Gallery in New York, then on Wooster Street in Soho. It was performed by members of the S.E.M. Ensemble: Petr Kotik (Director), Chris Nappi, Joseph Kubera, and Den Neill (sound mix); and four guests: John Cage, Dick Higgins, Jackson Mac Low, and Anne Tardos. "Empty Words," written in 1973-1974, is arguably the most musical of John Cage's texts. Made up of fragments from the journals of Henry David Thoreau, it consists of four parts. The first is a chance-derived mix of phrases, words, syllables, and single letters; subsequent parts each eliminate one of these textual elements from the mix. By the fourth part (performed here), there is nothing left but single letters. As the text becomes simpler and simpler, silences become more and more prominent. Includes a 12-page booklet with texts by Jackson Mac Low and James Pritchett.

File under: Performance Art
Cat. number: DWAB 005CD
Year: 2010