Listeners who occasionally find themselves listening to new experimental music frequently
describe themselves as being lost. Although listeners are in a better position to declare this a
problem and do something about it, composers and performers of new experimental music, who
are aware of this fact, are also in a position to do something about it. Composers and performers
can: (1) ignore this fact and accept as fate that listeners will find themselves lost; (2) strive
to make music less new and experimental so that listeners will find themselves in familiar surroundings;
(3) avail themselves of advertisers' packaging techniques that can turn anything into a familiar thing;
(4) treat performance as a context for teaching - wherein being lost is a necessary and temporary
state - by inventing new ways of presenting new experimental music. Response (1) reflects no
interest in social change; responses (2) and (3) go along with social changes that are part of the
status quo; response (4) reflects an interest in creating social change that goes against the status
quo.

Response (4): treating performance as a context for learning implies a shift of medium. A shift of
medium from music to theater, for example, can be done in such a way that listeners become
intrigued by experiment in music. One such project that has not yet been exhausted is Composed
Rehearsals. The general assignment for composed rehearsals is to write a scene in which the
concert presentation of a piece flips into a rehearsal situation. In the scene, sections of the music
that present difficulties for listeners are shown to present difficulties for the performers as well;
while performers grapple with performance problems, they give listeners an inside view of the
piece. The scripts have to be so written that the quarrels that erupt, the glooms that descend,
the debates decided by trying out different versions allow the eavesdropping listener to get an insight
into the significance of a piece: to glimpse some of the alternatives chosen and something of the
process of their choosing.


Traces(01) Beginning