Mime article misses

In the Sept. 26 story, “It’s mime time,” the writer, Nathan Hall, clearly has a distaste for mime as both a practice and a concept, even though his writing demonstrates just how little he knows about it as an art form. Hall’s ignorance aside, his willingness to identify a brush as coated in noxiousness – in this case the noxious substance being mime – and then smear Kari Margolis-Brown with that brush is inexcusable and inaccurate.

If Hall had spent time researching mime as a practice, he would discover both a long history and a vibrant presence for the form in Europe. Both mime and clowning are eloquent, articulate, refined and respected means of expression there. While he may not have had the opportunity to travel abroad much to see such work, it is easily researched via the Internet, at local campus libraries or when we are lucky enough to have these artists tour their work in the states.

Had Hall done his homework, he would also have discovered that while Margolis-Brown and Tony Brown both have experience in the teachings of Etienne Decroux, they have accurately dubbed their work as Physical Theater. They have created a method of training the body and a manner of constructing work filled with powerful imagery that deserves a great deal more respect than Hall afforded it in his self-centered search for an amusing turn of phrase.

His article has done nothing to enlighten anyone about the production. He only managed to paint it as some sort of adolescent romp in which people run through all the mime cliches available to his limited imagistic vocabulary.

Hall needs to do his homework before he goes after such accomplished artists with his sharp little pencil.

I won’t argue here what the role of the critic is in our society, but this most certainly is not an example of what it should be.