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Sonatas and Interludes’ two dancers unfold through fluid yet crisp movements set to the percussive sound of a John Cage score for prepared piano.
Richard Tanner created Sonatas and Interludes for the Eglevsky Ballet in 1982, and the work entered the repertory of New York City Ballet during the 1988 American Music Festival. The ballet is set to five pieces from John Cage’s "Sonatas and Interludes", a 20 piece collection of music composed for prepared piano between 1946 and 1948. The term prepared piano refers to a concept developed by Cage around 1938, in which the composer experimented with changing a piano’s sound by inserting bits of wood, paper, screws, or other objects between or on the strings at various points to produce a more percussive sound. Instructions, either written or described in diagrams, are given in the front of the score in minute detail.
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