Monday, September 24, 2007

Marcel Marceau, now silent

I saw Marcel Marceau's real face for the first time today. Sadly, it was in his obituary in the NY Times. Odd, isn't it, that his chalk-face was better known to the world than his real face.

What an amazing little man. His art, his imagination swept us out of our theater seats, across the proscenium and into his vision of the world.

And what vision. Without a sound and using only his hands and his body, the mime would act out universal truths in four minute routines.

Imagine a sketch where "one of his hands played evil, the other good, twisting and struggling until they combined in prayer." Imagine.

Marceau was a man of many talents; an artist, an author of children's books and a movie actor. Largely unappreciated in his native France, he was truly a world treasure.

A 1999 NY Times writer once wrote that Marceau remained a model of classic mime, not a fossil.

"If you love your art, you just do it," said Marceau. "Time will judge me."

Wave good-bye.

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