My Summer Lair Chapter #194: When I Say Mime What’s The First Image You See In Your Mind?
Soon as you hear mime you start thinking about that classic trapped in an invisible box gig right? Slowly placing his hands one at a time on this flat invisible hard surface: silently trapped. (Heh…in “space” no one can hear you scream!)
But honestly? A mime is a wonderful reminder that we’ve forgotten the value of communication. If you think a mime not using any language or speaking can’t effectively communicate than you’re not a driver who freely flips rude drivers the bird. See you mimed an action…a graphic one but still you communicated your emotions without language or speaking.
Indeed: we’re (ironically) talking about mimes for this episode…specifically famous mime Marcel Marceau who remarked: “A magician makes the visible invisible. A mime makes the invisible visible.” Yes: that’s it exactly.
With The Art of Silence playing at the 2022 Hot Docs documentary film festival Marcel Marceau gets a Last Dance! Well earned too: from working with the French Resistance during World War II (he rescued thousands of Jewish children and used mime to keep them entertained; as they were smuggled to safety) to his friendship with Michael Jackson (that’s who introduced me to Marcel Marceau and it was from that friendship that we get the Moonwalk…what, yo son!) to current tussles his friends and family are having with his imposing legacy.
It’s shocking but for a cultural giant this is his first feature length documentary. Sadly he is dead…Marcel Marceau died in 2007 so that’s disappointing his voice and his reflections aren’t an active part of this documentary.
I spoke to the director Maurizius Staerkle Drux who was in Zurich, Switzerland where he lives and works. And yes we do talk about Swiss chocolate (mmm) and Swiss money (double mmm). But we also discuss his deaf father who is featured in the documentary and is also a mime. Woah…I know.
Shall we begin? This is my conversation with Maurizius The Art of Silence screening at Hot Docs 2022 and hopefully other film festivals soon.
Host Sammy Younan
Recorded: Thursday March 24, 2022 at 11:30 am
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