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History of Theatrical Biomechanics of Meyerhold

Understood like a way to pass the ideas of the artist to the public, the body should necessarily have always the proper form.
That is why the student, which studied the 7 principles of the construction of the action (the techniques), should exercise to develop the proper body expressiveness (the practice of the techniques).
Meyerhold during the years had structured for his students about 150 stable physical exercises having the same subject, and called like in music, Etudes.
The movements are codified forms, and are more difficult training for the actor because at the same time help the student to maintain alive techniques and the proper form in the space.
In everyday live, when the theatrical system takes into account also the study of the form, this also gives the unambiguous interpretation. There are examples in all traditional Asian theatres and also Comedy of Art and in Classic ballet. Those pedagogies have a precise aim: to arrive to control the precise form, which is already known.

The theatrical biomechanics doesn't give any stile.

Historically the performance stile of Meyerhold, taking into account firstly the ideas of symbolism and than following futurism and constructivism, goes away from naturalism and realism of Stanislavski in order to use the expressive possibilities of Grotesque. Useful to express the artistic idea of the Russian director and to criticize with the proper peculiarity the habits of Russia before and during the Soviet Union, with the time refined and changed.

The power of the method, like for the scientific theory, is in its universality and applicability for every type of stile and performance situation.

The research work of Meyerhold and the Theatrical Biomechanics was the starting point for the artistic research of the biggest artists of the theatre of '900, from Jerzy Grotowski to Eugenio Barba, from Julian Beck to Thaddeus Cantor, from Peter Brook to Carmello Bene.

From the first years Meyerhold didn't write in the books the results of his research work, like Stanislavski did, in order to prevent the possible wrong interpretations by the persons that had never taken part in his work. He admired the pedagogical traditions of the oriental theatres where the experience was orally transmitted from generation to generation, maintaining it alive and renewing the way of teaching but always protected from the multiplicity of interpretations and forcing.
At the end of his live Meyerhold leaved his huge pedagogical inheritance to the unique person that was near him for 20 years, his collaborator and intelligent teacher Nikolai Kustov.


Micro Teatro Terra Marique

Centro Internazionale Studi di Biomeccanica Teatrale

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Pedagogy Director:

Gennadi Nikolaevich Bogdanov

Artistic coordinator:

Claudio Massimo Paternò