Odd Jobs Colleges and Universities Leonard Pitt School of Mime

About the Leonard Pitt School of Mime an acting college for silent performers.



The Leonard Pitt School of Mime

1722 Blake Street

Berkeley, Calif. 94703

Within the last year or two, mime schools have been popping up all over the landscape due to a sudden voguish interest in the art. This school began in 1970 and attracts students from the entire U.S.

Originally founder Pitt did not intend to be a professional mime; he dreamed of becoming an advertising art director. However, in the early 1960s, he switched his allegiance when he had a chance to study under a pantomimist who had been posing for a drawing class he was taking. Eventually Pitt studied mime in Paris with Marcel Marceau's mentor, Etienne Decroux.

Students in Pitt's school learn to use their bodies to communicate fully, as they study the choices they have in any physical movement. They build their strength, control, and stamina with special exercises and develop the "movement vocabulary" of mime. The use of masks, many of which Pitt has carved himself, is another tool which helps students to articulate moods and movement.

Tuition varies according to the particular courses the school may be offering. An eight-week intensive course (Monday through Friday, 3 1/2 hours daily) on mime and mask theater is $190. An eight-week course on mask improvisation (once a week, 2 1/2 hours) is $55. The school also offers weekend workshops.

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