Julliard faculty member holds master class on Delsarte System in the Gallagher Student Center

Class open to the public | April 14, 2008

Xavier’s theater arts department is offering a master class with Joe Williams of the Juilliard School on April 20, from 10:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. in the Gallagher Student Center. This is a rare chance for actors, dancers and students of holistic movement to explore firsthand the body language study that gave birth to the modern theater, the Alexander Technique, modern dance and the Dalcroze method of music study.  

Francois Delsarte studied at the Paris Conservatory and became unsatisfied with the posed style of acting taught. He began to study how humans actually moved, behaved and responded to various emotional and real-life situations. He observed people in real life in public places of all kinds and discovered certain patterns of expression. His work inspired dancers such as Isadora Duncan, who taught Delsarte’s methods until later developing her own method. Delsarte never wrote a book explaining his method and neither did his only protégé. However, student Genevieve Stebbins wrote a successful book in 1885, The Delsarte System of Expression. Ironically, the success of the Delsarte System was its undoing. By the 1890s, it was being taught everywhere, not always as Delsarte had intended. No certification was required to teach a course with the name Delsarte attached, and it fell into empty posing with little emotion. 

Joe Williams has a BA in organizational and interpersonal communication, and a minor in theater from Wright State University. Considered the world’s leading authority in Delsarte, he is known internationally for rediscovering the validity of Delsarte for the modern theater. He is on the movement faculty for the Dalcroze Institute at Juilliard, where students from around the world learn his Three Pillars approach to Delsarte.

Xavier students pay $5, for all others the fee is $10 per person. To register call Tracy at 513-745-3576.