• John Cage
  • Hymns and Variations (1979)

  • Henmar Press, Inc. (World)
  • 12 Amplified Voices
  • 20 min

Programme Note

For this work, Cage employed harmonic subtractive techniques on two hymns by William Billings: Old North and Heath. Each hymn is treated in this fashion for 5 iterations, resulting in 10 variations. The subtractive techniques are similar to those Cage used in Apartment House 1776 and Quartets I-VIII. The composition makes use of only vowel sounds, which should be sung without vibrato.