CAGE, JOHN. 1912-1992. Autograph Musical Manuscript Initialed ("J.C."), ink on translucent paper 430 x 278 mm, n.p., [after 1958], being page 6 from the piano part of Concert for Piano and Orchestra,
Lot 194
CAGE, JOHN. 1912-1992.
Autograph Musical Manuscript Initialed ("J.C."), ink on translucent paper 430 x 278 mm, n.p., [after 1958], being page 6 from the piano part of Concert for Piano and Orchestra,
Sold for US$ 18,750 inc. premium

Fine Books and Manuscripts

12 Jun 2018, 13:00 EDT

New York

Lot Details
CAGE, JOHN. 1912-1992.
Autograph Musical Manuscript Initialed ("J.C."), ink on translucent paper 430 x 278 mm, n.p., [after 1958], being page 6 from the piano part of Concert for Piano and Orchestra, particularly fine.
Provenance: Betty Randolph Bean (1917-2002); Private Collection.

RARE AUTOGRAPH MUSICAL LEAF from John Cage's revolutionary Concert for Piano and Orchestra, the Piano section, one of his first works and most important works introducing his idea of indeterminacy, and a landmark in musical notation. Commissioned by Elaine de Kooning the Concerto comprises 63 pages containing 84 types of compositions in 84 different notations, and meant to be played in any order, in whole or in part, for any duration: "Each part is one system for a single pianist to be played with or without any or all parts written for orchestral instruments. The whole is to be taken as a body of material presentable at any point between minimum (nothing played) and maximum (everything played) both horizontally and vertically. A program made within determined length of time (to be altered by a conductor when there is one) may involve any reading, i.e., any sequence of parts or parts thereof." (Introduction). While his indeterminacy bordered on chaos in practice (notably in the opening performance, where many of the performers mistook these open choices as freedom to stray from the notation), his revolution in graphic notation would reverberate through his later work, as in Variations. A particularly fine example of Cage's experiments in notational style.
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