I went to the John Cage birthday celebration at St. Mark’s Church yesterday. Big crowd. Awful sound. A couple dozen people mumbled into a bad p.a. system. It was impossible to understand what they were saying, with a few exceptions. This guy came prepared, though, with his own music and his own setup. His name is Kevin Hufnagel.
When I mentioned the bad p.a. system to a friend, he messaged back:
There’s a good story about Cage showing up at a concert hall for a performance of one of his works. He hadn’t called ahead, or reserved a seat, and was almost too late. He sat down in the very back. An usher recognized him and said, “Oh, Mr. Cage, you must sit up front where the sound is better.” Cage tilted his head quizzically and said, “Better sound. What an interesting concept.”
Great story. Probably apocryphal.
(I recorded Hufnagel with my new little gizmo, a Flip Video Mino. The image is much sharper here when you click “watch in high quality.”)