Author Archives: John Kennedy

Parlor Music and its Double (With Apologies to Artaud)

“We are part of a harmonized collectivity of consciousness equivalent to a sort of super-consciousness. The earth is not only becoming covered in myriads of grains of thought, but is becoming enclosed in a single thinking envelope, so as to form a single vast grain of thought, the plurality of individual reflections grouping themselves together […]

Critiquing Al Niente

It seems today that many so-called artists, performing organizations, and presenters are guilty of practicing their work as if they are doing no more than delivering a consumable product. Given Al Niente’s review of the Metro Philharmonic in last Thursday’s Daily Times, they are evidently joined in this charade by music journalists. Mr. Niente’s review […]

Tools for Organic Compos(t)ing

“Musical notation is one of the most amazing picture-language inventions of the human animal. It didn’t come into being of a moment but is the result of centuries of experimentation. It has never been quite satisfactory for the composer’s purposes and therefore the experiment continues. Why is this process frowned upon today? Must we alone […]

Let’s Dance

O body swayed to music, O brightening glance, How can we know the dancer from the dance? —from “Among School Children,” William Butler Yeats Music and dance were perhaps born together. When small children hear music, they move. The impulse of the dance reveals an inner nature of music, and somehow dance brings music closer […]

Gender Blind to See More

Back in 1987, I was in The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, researching the music of John J. Becker in the Americana Collection. It was by chance that I noticed, and then became immersed, in the work of the composer in the Collection who followed Becker alphabetically: Johanna Magdelena Beyer. Beyer had […]