Peggy Butler. 1935

The Scotsman


4 March 1935

Title of Newspaper Article: Performance of Mimes

In this review of it’s London performance, this show organised by Irene Mawer’s Institute of Mime received excellent coverage with the standard of the work being described as ‘high’.

In this review, we learn more about the Scottish ballad Tam Lin (which I described in a recent blog post called ‘Even the Tiniest…’ posted on 22 June 2021).  The aim was to see if Scottish ballads could be used as themes for pictorial representation – in other words, could a mime scene or play be based upon any of the stories?

In this instance, Tam Lin was the choice, and the producer, Miss Peggy Butler, is given credit for the rhythm and colour which created an effective picture of grace and fantasy.  The mimes who performed were students at the Edinburgh School of Speech Training and Dramatic Art.

Performers during the rest of the show were drawn from various other drama schools, including the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA); the Central School of Speech and Drama (Elsie Fogerty); plus the Ginner-Mawer School of Dance and Drama.

A mime piece called ‘The Marriage of Columbine’ is described as being one of the most successful mimes and was produced by Irene Mawer who said that the more simple the story or legend, and the more spontaneous its manner of expression, the better the result.  The reviewer says that a number of the items were ‘ambitious’, though they gave great pleasure to the audience.  A back-handed compliment possibly?  Not all of Irene Mawer’s reviews were glowing, so this is a hint that some of the pieces didn’t work as well as she had hoped that they might.

In order that Irene Mawer can be more well know, please like/share/comment, etc.  Thanks.

Author: Janet Fizz Curtis

Janet Fizz Curtis is trained in the Irene Mawer Method of Mime and Movement and is now writing a book about the life of Irene Mawer.

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