All Things Cage: Laura Kuhn on Martin Friedman and "Il Treno di John Cage" (Audio)

Mar 11, 2023
Hosted by Laura Kuhn, Executive Director of the John Cage Trust.

This week Kuhn returns to the subject of John Cage’s All Ricerca del Silenzio Perduto (1978), familiarly known as Il Treno, by reading a piece written by Martin Friedman about his attendance at the inaugural performance of Cage’s composition in Bologna, June 26-28, 1978. Friedman, who died in 2016, was an American museum curator well known as the long-time director of the Walker Art Center. Friedman sent Kuhn this piece, which he’d entitled “Il Treno di John Cage,” not long before he died, both to place in the archives of the John Cage Trust but also looking for a publisher. She cautioned him that it was too short to stand alone and offered to publish it on the John Cage Trust’s website, He declined, choosing to continue searching. Kuhn was happy to learn recently that the piece has since been published at the Walker Art Center’s own website,, as the sixth installment of its ongoing series “Art (re)Collecting.” This is a beautiful recollection of Friedman’s 1978 trip to Bologna to witness Il Treno, and hence serves as a beautiful introduction to the extended excerpt we listen to in the second half of the program. This recording is drawn from one of the CDs contained in a stunning bilingual book by Baskerville Art Books in Bologna, published in 2008 simply as Alla Ricerca del Silenzio Perduto – Il Treno di John Cage.