Music: Yesterday's Revolution

In its 23 seasons, Venice's International Festival of Contemporary Music has more than once moved its audiences to near violence; in his 48 years, self-styled Non-Expressionist Composer John Cage, the "prepared piano" man, has reduced more than one audience to near lunacy. Last week U.S. Composer Cage and the Contemporary Music Festival linked forces in a concert at Venice's famed old La Fenice Theater. The explosion could be heard across the Grand Canal.

Mad Melange. For his Venice performance, Cage prepared a typically mad melange of musical low jinks. The evening started mildly enough...

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