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· CONTENTS FOR SEPTEMBER, 1895.
COPYRIGHT, 1895, THE SCHOOL OF Expression.
458 BOYLSTON STREET, BOSTON, MASS.
Summer Term, July 5th to August 10th
Annual Session, October 22.
Its work is definite and progressive. — Training of voice and body by systematic programmes of exercises, each step a distinctive advance.
Its methods are thorough. — Faults are eradicated by removal of causes. The deepest needs are met.
Its training is harmonious. – Development of voice, body, and mind; education of the whole man.
It makes students simple and natural, — No artificial systems or rules Every student becomes more himself. Development and growth, not aggregation or affectation.
Its courses are scientific and systematic. -- All the methods of the world have been investigated and adapted. Work for all professions using the voice, and for culture. Over seventy distinct courses (see Catalogue, pp. 11-15).
Its results are artistic and literary. - Direct study of nature, and all forms of literature and art in relation to expression. Students give an average of twelve public, besides many private is each year. No hackneyed pieces allowed.
For sixteen years the sch i s led every advance in the spoken word. It has stood for progress, simplicity, Ved good taste; for the development of the imagination, and a higher appreciation of literature and art; for thorough scientific and artistic methods of developing delivery; for extemporaneous speaking and educational dramatic training; for the practical study of literature through the vocal expression ; for the spoken word as an agent of education.
"I caught a little of the enthusiasm of the School of Expression; I thought the recital showed the fine principles of your teaching and the excellent discipline and training. There can be no doubt about the classic and philosophic principles of your work , .,. You are on fundamental principles, I believe, and every year demonstrates this conviction. You must obtain proper recognition some time. I went to Copley Square and the new Public Library from the recital. I did not find myself in a different atmosphere; all was on a high plane,– Trinity, the Public Library, and the School of Expression are alike lofty, impassioned, inspiring."- Private letter from a prominent clergyman, April 24, 1895, on the “Stevenson Recital.”
“The work was of such a high order that it demanded the highest praise. . .. Each pupil retained his or her individuality, and yet there was a certain ripeness of attainment which I know from experience is the result of the best training. It was a delightful surprise to me to find that the teaching which you have put forth in your book (The Province of Expression ) is so thoroughly caught up by your pupils, and I send this letter from the conviction that it is my duty to express to you the great pleasure and satisfaction which your entertainment gave us. "- Private letter from the literary editor of one of the foremost Boston Dailies, May 7, 1895, on the “ Trilby Recital.”
For catalogues or further information, address S. S. CURRY, Ph.D.,
Un peu l'amour,
Et puis — bonjour!
Some love and play,
And then — good-day!
La vie est brève ;
Un peu d'espoir,
Et puis —- bonsoir !
So short life seems ;
Some hope and light
And then — good-night!
FORMS AND MODES OF EXPRESSION. M A N can receive and give; and just as life depends upon the
VT inspiration and expiration of air, so the life and growth of the mind depends upon the reception and the manifestation of truth. It was Carlyle who said, “ All education is learning to read.” The greatness of the mind is measured by its insight. Shakespeare was great because of his insight into character ; Wordsworth was great in his imaginative insight into Nature, in his power to penetrate to the heart of Nature. The culture of any one is in proportion to his ability to read the languages of his kind. He must not only be able to read books, but to appreciate music, to feel the force of painting, and to realize the life and movement expressed in sculpture. All true education opens the eyes to the beauty and force, the meaning and message, of Nature and art.
But Shakespeare was not only great in insight; he could express what he saw. Wordsworth's imagination could not only see the deepest beauty of Nature, but he could suggest, in simple words, the impression made upon his heart. It is impossible to develop deep insight without a study and use of expression. It is the law of the mind not only to receive but to give; and the power to receive grows with the struggle to express. Impression must not only precede and determine expression, but must be followed by expression.
There is a modern tendency to neglect expression of all kinds. There are so many acts of expression that each line is left to some particular artist, to some specialist, and is too often looked upon as merely “professional,” and not a part of education. Not only this, but the schools have considered it their chief duty to teach men information and how to find it. So many discoveries have been made in recent years that emphasis has been naturally placed upon the study of science. The closest observers of modern education, however, have come to realize that the artistic nature has not been sufficiently recognized. A mere acquisition of facts or information can never compensate for lack of power to render or to express.
What are the elementary acts of expression? There are many, but these are the chief: to converse, to read aloud, to recite, to address an audience, to teach, to act, to write, to sing, to play on an instrument, to compose, to draw, to paint, to model as in clay, and to carve. Which of these has the greatest educational value ? Which can be universally used for the development of the mind ?
Any one of them may be used as a means, and a certain use or many of them should be practised by those who wish to develop the artistic nature to any high degree. All great artists have struggled to appreciate, if they have not practised, other arts beside their own. All the arts are one in aim and spirit ; and he who practises one must study the others for the sake of finding the deep universal principle underlying all. He who works only in one art will become narrow, and will be governed by rules rather than by principles. Success in any art demands an understanding of the true artistic spirit and point of view. Mechanical art proceeds by rules; the noblest fine art proceeds by principles and laws. One
fail ever to become an artist; such a one is rarely able to feel the force of great principles.
For educational purposes the two most important of the elemental acts of expression are to speak and to write. But the first of these, in the order of Nature, is to speak. We learn to speak before we learn to write. Speech is the form of expression, too, which is most universal, which lies at the foundation of all other forms of expression, and which marks more than anything else the man of culture and refinement. The spoken word lay at the foundation of the culture of the Greeks. This was the chief means of their education, and the cause of the high development of their artistic power.
But what can be done to develop this elementary art? There is a great prejudice against elocutionary training. Part of this prejudice has been due to the artificial methods commonly employed; part also because practice has been given merely to recitation. The acts of Vocal Expression — to converse, to read, to recite, to speak, and to act — should especially be used in co-operation. There should be practice in all of them for delivery. Each of them calls into more immediate activity some special set of faculties, or powers of the man. Practice in merely one of these acts tends to be onesided, tends to artificiality. Work, in all modes of expression, tends to prevent artificiality and mannerisms ; it tends to prevent imitation and develops originality. The student by comparing his work in two modes will be more apt to feel the true spontaneous action of his own faculties.
The one who practises reciting alone is apt to become artificial. The speaker who merely wishes to make orations is apt to become stilted or cold; a person who converses only is apt to become wordy. The public reader must be able to appreciate the actor's point of view, or be in danger of too great exaggeration.
There has been a special tendency to neglect conversation, the simplest and most elementary of all these modes of expression. Elocution has so confined itself to recitation that it has had very