New York: Carnegie Hall, .
Unbound. One 4” x 7” sheet printed in letterpress on one side and folded twice to make four pages. Light toning at the edges of the first page, near fine. A very scarce program from the 1946 premiere performance of the complete *Three Dances for Two Pianos*, and the earliest Sonatas that would become the *Sonatas and Interludes*, Cage’s most famous work for prepared piano, a cycle of 20 short pieces for prepared piano composed from 1946 through 1948. The work was dedicated by Cage to the Armenian pianist Maro Ajemian, who performed the complete cycle at Carnegie Hall in January, 1949.
Cage, one of the most influential American composers of the 20th Century, began composing his first pioneering works for prepared piano in 1940. *A Book of Music* (composed in 1944), and *Three Dances* (1945), his only works composed for two prepared pianos, were seminal in the development of modern dance through his association with choreographer Merce Cunningham.
The program is also notable for its modern typographical design, finely printed on bond paper, and selected blurbs by fellow composers Paul Bowles, Lou Harrison, and Virgil Thomson, and a few dumbfounded critics: “It (the prepared piano) distantly resembles the harpsichord but more accurately an old piano which should be thrown out.”.