to do nothing is very difficult,

or; there is no such thing as silence –

Just as Robert Wilson, I still find John Cage‘s Lecture on Nothing to be revolutionary new, this is how it begins (click on page to get a better view):

Robert Wilson on Cage:

To my mind Lecture on Nothing is text as music and theater, as philosophy & comedy, and freedom! No doubt the text is very stimulating for me as a writer, its not like I will copy Cage, but his words set my thoughts off in all kinds of direction; they feed my creativity and make me discover new paths in my own project.

John Cage (1912-1992), STUDYING mushrooms & silence

8 Comments Add yours

  1. Harold Rhenisch says:

    Have you tried scoring a poem to cage’s crib? It can be really powerful.

    1. Sigrun says:

      Dear Harold,
      I must admit: I don’t even know what “cage’s crib” is?!?

  2. Harold Rhenisch says:

    Oooooops! He scored it as music, with a special notation for the page. Four columns. Each takes exactly the same length of time, like a bar of music. The placement of the words within the column and the number of words within a column, etc, all indicate timing, but it must take place within the amount of time the column takes. Asterisks and space indicate silence. Cool, eh!

    1. Sigrun says:

      I see, its the way he has “set” the page of some of his own texts, actually as is done in e.g Lecture for Nothing?
      And here comes a stupid language question: what exactly does the word “score” mean here?

      1. Harold Rhenisch says:

        Hi, oh my, I am being so confusing. “Score”, as in “musical score”. The musician (Cage) has set up a grid (What you see on the “Lecture for Nothing”) to provide performance notes for his words, just as, say, Bach did for musical notes. A thought comes to me … have you heard him read these things? They are entrancing to listen to. He is such a fine speaker.

  3. dianajhale says:

    Lovely piece and food for thought again!

  4. Have you heard this? It’s one of Cage’s lectures and one of my favourite pieces of music.

    1. Sigrun says:

      I know this music, I used to listen to it a lot years ago – but I do not know anything about the Cage – Glass relationship. What can you tell me?

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