Music for the Turkish bath


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Victorian Turkish Baths: their origin, development, and gradual decline

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Music for the Turkish bath, by John Cage

The only music which is suitable for playing while relaxing in a Victorian Turkish Bath is  4'33"  by the American composer John Cage. It was originally intended to include the whole of the score below. However, considerations of 'fair use' limit the proportion of any work still in copyright which may legally be quoted, even though the first edition is now out of print. So the last part only of the first movement is transcribed below, and this will need to be played twice for the first movement, and once again for each of the last two movements. Although the hot rooms are too small to allow a whole orchestra to bathe at once, Cage wrote that 'the work may be performed by (any) instrumentalist or combination of instrumentalists and last any length of time'. Enjoy.

John Cage score excerpt


This page reformatted 15 January 2022

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Julian Oddy for inadvertently inspiring this page with his letter to the Guardian

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