Mime, theatre director and influential teacher, Jacques Lecoq died on Jan. 19 at a Paris hospital from a cerebral hemorrhage. He was 77 and lived in Paris.
Though never receiving the international fame of fellow mime, Marcel Marceau, Lecoq was considered an extraordinary teacher of mime, which he dubbed, "corporeal expression."
Lecoq's celebrated school, Ecole Jacques Lecoq in Paris, opened in 1956 and is now run by his wife, Fay Lees Lecoq. At the school, students learn silent improvisation, the use of masks and techniques of movement.
Pupils trained in Lecoq's theories have included members of the Theatre de Complicite, which he helped to found, and of the mime ensemble Mummenschanz, directors Ariane Mnouchkine and Steven Berkoff, actor Geoffrey Rush, dancer and choreographer Joelle Bouvier, the mime Avner the Eccentric and Art playwright Yasmina Reza.
His writings on theatre, "Le Corps Poetique," or "The Poetic Body," was published last year in France and right before his death, Lecoq collaborated on a two-part documentary on his extraordinary career and teachings, "Les Deux Voyages de Jacques Lecoq." Jacques Lecoq is survived by his wife Fay, three sons: Patrick, Richard and Francois and a daughter, Pascale, all of whom reside in Paris.
-- By Sean McGrath