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The William Fifield Collection

Marcel Marceau

"Marcel Marceau Speaks"

Cover of Marcel Marceau Speaks"Marcel Marceau Speaks" started out as a tape recording made by William Fifield with Marcel Marceau. From this informal beginning, their conversation on mime went on to have its first release in 1971 as an LP. Caedmon Records later also issued it as a cassette.

Digitally remastered, it is now available again from Times Two Audio, which has reissued it as a CD and in an online format. A 39-second introduction was added for the new release.

The audio clips are from the beginning of the first track.

Voices of Marcel Marceau and William Fifield: "Marcel Marceau Speaks" (48-second WAV, 523 KB)

Voice of Marcel Marceau: "Marcel Marceau Speaks" (16-second WAV, 178 KB)

1. The Origins of Mime  15:43
Mime in Greece and Rome • Italy: Commedia dell'arte • France: Molière • England: Grimaldi the clown • Silent films of Chaplin and Mack Sennett • Deburau's refinement of the character of Pierrot

2. Making the Invisible Visible  4:50
Marceau's early years • Wartime in the French Resistance • Studies with Etienne Decroux and Charles Dullin • Jean-Louis Barrault's Les Enfants du Paradis • Performing Harlequin in Barrault's theater company • Decroux's "art of counterpoint" • Formation of own company • The birth of Bip

3. The Eternal Law of the Underdog 8:02
Mime has to tell the story of man—tragedy, comedy • Chaplin's Little Tramp • The eternal story of the man who slides on the banana peel • Bip as a continuation of Chaplin and Pierrot

4. Style and Character through Gesture 12:06
The artist's mission as defined by Racine: "To touch and to please" • The role of style in compressing aspects of reality to create illusion through symbols and images • Pantomime de style: Man's struggle with the elements • Pantomime de Bip: Emphasis on portrayal of character

5. The Mime Must Sing within Himself 10:21
Showing how life is • Comparisons with Picasso and Cocteau • A sense of song in the mime's gestures • Marceau on his paintings, their similarity in spirit to Chagall's • The universality of man

6. Life Copies the Theater 7:42
The theater's tradition of imitating life on the stage now reversed • Why young people dress to attract attention • The terror of anonymity

Total playing time: 59:50

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