John Cage Centenary Festival

John Cage Centenary Festival

“The New Century Players perform with wonted skill and poise; one hears the music and doesn’t worry about the very real difficulties of executing it.” Los Angeles Times

Los Angeles premieres

Celebrating the 100th anniversary of John Cage’s birth, REDCAT hosts two nights of rarely played music—some of which is performed for the first time in Los Angeles. The New Century Players, the Herb Alpert School of Music at CalArts’ professional new music ensemble, joins forces with the CalArts Orchestra to open the festival with a program of large-scale pieces by the American visionary, including Hymnkus, Ryoanji, and Renga. The New Century Players center the festival’s second evening on the Cage’s seminal graphic score Fontana Mix—a telling example of the composer’s fascination with the ideas of indeterminacy, chance, and silence. In addition to the original Fontana Mix tape music composition itself, the program consists of instrumental group works composed using the Fontana Mix score by Cornelius Cardew, Karlheinz Essl, Ulrich Krieger, Max Neuhaus, and James Tenney, responding to Cage’s benchmark.


Program for February 15
in program order

Ryoanji (1984) solo; Rachel Rudich, shakuhachi 

Hymnkus (1986)


Etcetera (1973)


Renga (1976)


 Fourteen (1990)

Ryoanji (1984) for ensemble


Program for February 16 
in program order

Playing continuously in the lobby: Karlheinz Essl: FontanaMixer (2004–7)

John Cage: Fontana Mix (1958)

John Cage: Aria (1958), with WBAI (1960)

Cornelius Cardew: Piece for Guitar (for Stella) (1964); Stuart Fox, solo guitar

John Cage: Water Walk (1959); Kristen Erickson, performer

Ulrich Krieger: Unterwelten II & III, woodwind sextet


Max Neuhaus: Fontana Mix-Feed (1965)

John Cage: Theater Piece (1960) with WBAI (1960)

James Tenney: (Fontana) Mix for Six (Strings) (2001), string sextet

Associated Images: 

WED 2/15
7:00 pm
THU 2/16
8:30 pm 

G - General Audience

M - REDCAT Members

ST - Students

CA - CalArts Students/Faculty/Staff