Marcel Marceau: 03/22/23 to 09/22/07

If death is the silencing of a loved one, what are we to conclude about the passing of a silent one? I’m not sure I can answer my question…but it crossed my mind to wonder if he who spoke less leaves more?


Commentary By: Daniel DiRito

While we live in a fully visual world, it is often dominated by what is spoken. Rarely do we communicate without words…and when we do, it can frequently demonstrate the most poignant expression of our humanity…be it a smile, a tear, or two people holding hands. Meaningful moments of silence are rare…and with the passing of Marcel Marceau, they become even more infrequent.

My first memories of Marceau date back to my childhood. I can recall the first time I saw Marcel Marceau perform on television…and I remember being mesmerized by the silent images. Today, as an adult, it seems clear that his appeal to me and all children is as it should be.

Children first learn to understand the world through visual observations. As such, the world is a limitless source of fascination. In seeing Marceau perform, the visual world was suddenly transformed into a cognitive experience…a morphing of the obvious into the sublime.

In a world where words have become pedestrian, pantomime remains an art of refinement…an effort to simplify and exemplify…yet clearly an equation whereby less becomes more. If death is the silencing of a loved one, what are we to conclude about the passing of a silent one? I’m not sure I can answer my question…but it crossed my mind to wonder if he who spoke less leaves more?

Cross-posted at Thought Theater

Sunday, September 23rd, 2007 by Daniel DiRito |

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