Tried reading 31’[58.9864” for a pianist]…tonight/today @ Third Street. Oh no. Oh no Oh no. It’s impossible music. Am I in over my head? Do people really play this? Did Cage? I wondered if I should rewrite it, page by page, but that’s a tremendous amount of work, too… and will it help? Probably would. I’d write measures in either 2/4 or 3/4 etc. and put auxiliary matters above the staff—harp notes too. I could try for one page and see what difference it makes. But shit, I’m a little spooked. [David] Tudor re-wrote whole scores. Augustus [Arnone] does too. I suppose my time has come. I could color coat according to 8ve. RH regular [for] loco, yellow [for] 8ve [higher], pink [for] 15ve [higher]. LH regular [for] loco, orange [for] 8ve [lower], brown [for] 15ve [lower]. And still be spatial, but just replot it. Fuck, really? Doesn’t have to be pretty. Maybe have it go by minute? One page per minute? No… because there are long breaks @ times. But I might owe this to the piece, and there IS still time. I’ve done good work, but if I really do want to do this piece live or solo as apiece, I need to approximate as little as possible, to not prepare it loosey-goosey with a “this is as good as it can get” attitude. Maybe it’ll be okay, and the more I dive in and separate the pieces, the better. Better than just running through it imperfectly and indefinitely and inconsistently till September. Also, will get me writing notes again, which is perhaps a good thing considering I want to write my [new work for piano]. Rehearsing with Lara went nicely—I’m glad I WENT, and now it’s just about preparing a good lineup of ideas for Saturday. Keyboard came today; I’m excited to try it. Will attach a contact mic tomorrow and see what results. Sheesh… write every note of the Cage again? Fuck. Like copying a Schubert symphony. With repeats. Well, painful or not[,] I can also write chords…patterns… Two pages a day? Three is maybe best. Three pages a day and I’d have it in a week. And I should do it at the piano. I mean, is it possible to make impossible music possible? Easy? Easier? Well, legible—let’s start with that. I need to just fucking SEE what’s going on in a way that I—not Cage—can understand. In Winter Music I could work with the score itself; it was messy and perhaps not, metrically at least, what Cage wanted (though I argue it could be/was) but this? It’s different. Durations aren’t free, and it’s not all on the fucking keys.
the good news: I finished my initial mark-through of Cage’s 31’57.9864”. the bad news: this is supposed to take me 4 seconds
won’t stop can’t stop
final tuning for today’s recording session of the Edward T. Cone 21 Preludes (at Maui Cultural and Arts Center)
behind a bunch of books on the piano I grew up playing, this:
any time a work of art offends someone on a personal level, i would argue that they don’t get it.
it occurred to me today, while driving in silence from vermont to new york, that i haven’t the foggiest recollection of what my high school senior picture looks like.
my quote, however, i do remember:
"Did you think I would play it badly?" -Sergei Rachmaninov