April 30, 2007

John Cage Performing Live On A 60's Game Show

Cage_Gameshow.jpgI’ve Got A Secret was a popular US game show of the 50’s and 60’s that featured a prominent personality, who would come on and tell the host a secret. A panel would then ask questions in an effort to work out what that “secret” was. In this episode from January 1960, the guest was none other than John Cage, who whispers to the host that he will perform one of his compositions, Water Walk. When the host then hears that it will be played on “instruments” that include a water pitcher, an iron pipe, a goose call, a mechanical fish, an electric mixer, five radios and a grand piano, he immediately abandons the usual format so this “magnificent demonstration” can take place. He is nonetheless concerned about the audience’s reaction, so he asks Cage if he is OK with people laughing at his performance. The great man good-naturedly replies, “Of course, I consider laughter preferable to tears."
(This priceless cultural artifact was made available by WFMU’s Station Manager Ken.)

Posted by Warren at April 30, 2007 07:28 PM | Experimental | Videos