theatre, film & tv past and present 2001-2008 & 2013…
Earlier this month, we featured Marcel Marceau, surely the most famous mime ever to live, performing the progression of human life, from birth to death, in four minutes. In the video above, you can watch him using his hands to act out something equally elemental: the battle between good and evil. If we think about the times evil has most notably reared its head, many of our minds go right to the Holocaust — as, no doubt, did Marceau’s, especially since he had first-hand experience with the horror of the Nazis, having lost his father in Auschwitz, and even used the art of mime against it.
The Jewish Marceau (née Mangel) got his first exposure to mime from a Charlie Chaplin film, which he saw at the age of five. Later, when France entered the Second World War, he and his family moved around the country to flee the Nazis, from whom it became increasingly difficult to hide as time went on. “I was hidden by my cousin Georges Loinger who was a heroic Resistance fighter,” Marceau recounted in a 2001 speech. “He said, ‘Marcel must hide for a while. He will play an important part in the theater after the war.’ How did he know that? Because he knew that…
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