John Cage essay

4'33

Having watched the performance of John Cage’s 4‘33’, I cannot come to a conclusion that it is actual music. However, something about it really touched me because it broke the boundaries between what is supposed to be music and what music can become. I do not think that Cage wanted to present himself as a showman. In my opinion, after having written so many beautiful pieces of music, he wanted to present to the world something very unique, something that no one had ever done before.

Nowadays, many people would agree that silence is also a kind of music, and sometimes silence is what people enjoy the most. Cage wrote a lot of great compositions, including piano solos In a Landscape and Dream, but 4‘33’ is a piece of music that makes people think. When I watched the orchestra “performing” this composition, it really made me immerse in my own thoughts, and I could hear almost nothing but the natural sounds of people. I think John Cage’s intention was to say that everything has its sounds, even silence and personal space of people.

Every piece of music has a structure, and 4‘33’ proves to be a piece of music by having one. It consists of several silences of certain durations, silences of different instruments. Even though many would say that this should not be considered serious music and music at all, I think there is some charm in it, which makes it special art. My own image of “music” has changed after having listened to extraordinary works of Edgar Varese and John Cage. In my opinion, each composer has a right to present music as he sees it, and everybody has his own vision of beauty. Music is a strictly individual thing, and tastes differ. However, I think it would be useful for everyone to get acquainted with the works of such interesting composers.

John Cage essay

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