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THE ART OF DRAMATIC AND LYRIC INTERPRETATION.

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102 DRAMATIC AND LYRIC INTERPRETATION
was a business letter,~some indifferent letter, or a love letter.
There were some who were unable to imitate putting on a pair of gloves without having the real gloves in their hands.
All my pupils had seen me when I was sing­ing the song Le lien serre, pretending to sew. They had seen how I pulled an imaginary needle out of my bodice, how I broke the thread, how I tied a knot, how I moistened the other end of my thread to file it into my needle, how I played the "virtuoso of observation" by insisting on the difficulty of filing the thread into the needle owing to bad sight, how I accentuated the bad sight by lifting my eyebrows, how I frowned and knit iriy brows.
When I asked some of my pupils to do this imaginary sewing, none of them could realize this gesture without a real needle and thread. None of them — and all certainly know how to sew — could even indicate the role which each hand plays in sewing. None of them had ap­parently observed their own fingers, they were ignorant of the life of their hands.
How then could one ever be able to incarnate human life with its thousand subtle shades!
If I have tried to show that observation is a vital quality for the dramatic artist, I would








E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III