John Cage’s Musicircus is an invitation to any number of musicians willing to perform simultaneously anything or in any way they desire. The manuscript is a list of musicians for the first performance, including a diagram for their positions in the performance space; it also indicates various works by Cage and Erik Satie that were performed, as well as a few non-musical works.
John Cage was a singularly inventive American composer who early on developed methods of selecting the components of his pieces by chance, first through the tossing of coins and later through the use of random number generators, simulating the coin oracle of the I Ching. Thus, his mature works did not originate in psychology, motive, drama, or literature, but, rather, were just sounds, free of judgments, motivation, fixed relations, and taste. His most enduring composition is the radically tacet 4’33” (1952), a work in three movements during which no sounds are intentionally produced.