The great anarchist, composer, and writer John Cage’s directions for his “composition” “Musicircus” are precisely in line with the anarchic spirit of the event: “You simply bring together under one roof as much music (as many musical groups and soloists) as practical under the circumstances.” The result should be as many different events as there are individual audience members to perceive them, each attending to the cornucopia as he or she desires. Chicago Composers, in partnership with the MCA, has assembled a multitude of Chicago musicians and performers for this weekend’s event, including such stalwart experimentalists as Mad Shak Dance Company, Goat Island, Tiny Hairs, the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians, and Industry of the Ordinary. If such names seem a little heady, rest assured that assorted fire-eaters, jugglers and popcorn vendors will keep the circus in “Musicircus.” Organizer Chris Preissing cites continuing cycles of violence and poverty, illustrated most recently by the tragic images from New Orleans, as symptoms of the hierarchical thought that “Musicircus” tries to short-circuit: “There is a unity in diversity that should be supported and allowed to flourish, a diversity that accepts the beauty in all of life and that results in what Cage refers to as abundance.” Complete with fire-eaters! (John Beer)
This production is now closed.