CLEP Humanities : Identifying Forms of Twentieth-Century Music

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for CLEP Humanities

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Example Questions

Example Question #61 : Performing Arts

Which modernist composer is known for the silent piece 4'33"?

Possible Answers:

Philip Glass

Modest Mussorgsky

Arnold Schoenberg

John Cage

Glenn Gould

Correct answer:

John Cage


John Cage became well known in the mid-twentieth century for his radical and odd compositions. In particular, Cage used odd instruments and strange tunings, and created a piano with objects placed on keys. His most famous work is the completely silent 4'33", which calls for the performer(s) to sit and do nothing for four minutes and thirty three seconds.

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