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Jacques Lecoq (Routledge Performance Practitioners) [Kindle Edition]

Simon Murray
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

This text offers a concise guide to the teaching and philosophy of one of the most significant figures in twentieth century actor training. Lecoq's influence on the theatre of the latter half of the twentieth century cannot be overestimated.

This is the first book to combine

  • an historical introduction to his life and the context in which he worked

  • an analysis of his teaching methods and principles of body work, movement

  • creativity, and contemporary theatre

  • detailed studies of the work of Theatre de Complicite and Mummenschanz

  • practical exercises demonstrating Lecoq's distinctive approach to actor training.


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About the Author

Simon Murray is Senior Lecturer in Drama at the University of Sunderland

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Broad and pleasing. 21 Feb. 2013
Whilst this does not go into any great depth on the course offered by L'école internationale de théâtre Jacques Lecoq (and this should not be the motivation for buying the book), Murray's study effects a broad and penetrating insight into the man that was Jacques Lecoq and the theatrical and historical structures that influenced the creation of his Parisian school.

Murray critically engages with the development of Lecoq's school and the theories of acting (and actor training) devised, making for an insightful academic read that problematises and theorises in its own right, rather than feebly accepting and reproducing Lecoq's own, previously published works.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fulfills it's Objective 5 Feb. 2007
In combining historical facts, key teachings and practical exercises, this book does succeed. The study of Theatre de Complicite is not by any means indepth.

This, however is also true of the rest of the book. It is an introduction and nothing more. It's practical usefulness is also questionable, where Lecoq's style was pysical, in-depth and time-consuming this does not attempt either. Any exercises discussed (the last 20 pages) are only mentioned in relation to theory. It is not representative of Lecoq's style, especially in comparison to Lecoq's "The Moving Body" which is nothing but physical exercises and theory centered around them.

May be useful for brief comparison to other practioners or when short of time.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 5.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jaques Lecoq by Simon Murray 26 Aug. 2005
By Thomas P. Joyner - Published on
Physical theatre is better practiced or seen than read about. Lecoq himself apparently acknowledged this reality, since his only book on the subject of his own pedagogy was not published until shortly before his death. Nevertheless, Murray does an excellent job of placing Lecoq's work in the context of Western performance tradition, current theoretical models of the body and culture, and of examining the creative journeys of a pair of theatre companies based in his . . . . well, I don't really want to call it a "method" . . . let's just just say, "based in his explorations of the performing body." For someone aware of Lecoq and interested in pursuing training in physical theatre, this makes an excellent first dive into the waters. Murray even provides you with a sense of what the pedagogical method in a Lecoq-based program will probably be like, and some exercises used in class.

There's not a lot out there on Lecoq yet, in terms of the printed word, but there are now a number of theatre companies and well-known performers and directors (Theatre Complicite, Mummenschanz, Theatre de la Jeune Lune, Bill Irwin, Julie Taymor and most of the "clowns" of the Cirque de Soleil, to name only a few) working with the inspiration Lecoq provided and, as they continue to achieve prominence in the culture, more and more will be written about Lecoq as a result.
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