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Sonic Youth, John Paul Jones Compose Dance Piece

Led Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones and alternative rock legends Sonic Youth have collaborated on an original musical piece for the Merce Cunningham Dance Company, and will perform together in Brooklyn, N.Y. in April. “Nearly Ninety,” a new full length work composed by Sonic Youth, Jones and mixed-media sound composer Takehisa Kosugi, will debut at the Brooklyn Academy of Music on April 16, Merce Cunningham’s 90th birthday.

The piece and its debut performances are part of “Merce Cunningham at 90,” a four day festival celebrating the choreographer’s work and influence. After its world premiere at BAM, “Nearly Ninety” will travel to Madrid, Champaign-Urbana, Paris, Berkeley, and London.

A long-time champion of improvisation and collaboration in dance, Cunningham and his dance company have worked with a number of musicians for past performances, including Radiohead, John Cage, and Sigur Ros.

Jones first performed with Merce Cunningham Dance Company in 2005, when he appeared as a guest musician with the Company’s in London. Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore performed with the Company in the late 1990’s.

John Paul Jones and Sonic Youth perform with the Merce Cunningham Dance Company, April 16-19. More info is available at