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QUESTIONS 1. Define Very Rapid movement. 2. When is it used ? 3. Where in uature do we find this movement illustrated ? 4. What are the general divisions of Movement ? 5. Which is most frequently required ? 6. In what combination will it be found ?
If the previous lessons have been thoroughly magtered the pupil must have reached the following conclusions : 14 1. That PATHOS, SOLEMNITY, and TRANQUILLITY unmingled with Grandeur and Sublimity must be expressed with
Effusive Form, Pure Tone, Subdued Force, Median Stress, Low Pitch, and Slow Movement, differing with different persons only in degree according to the inten. sity of the emotion or feeling.
2. That NARRATIVE, DESCRIPTIVE, DIDACTIC, and ANIMATED THought can be uttered only with
Expulsive Form, Pure Tone, Moderate Force, Radical Stress, Middle Pitch, and Moderate Movement, differing only in degree.
3. That SOLEMNITY, SUBLIMITY, GRANDEUR, REVERENCE, ADORATION, and DEVOTION must be expressed with
Effusive Form, Orotund Quality, Energetic Force, Thorough and Median Stress, Low Pitch, and Slow Movement.
4. That ARGUMENTATIVE, ORATORICAL, and IMPASSIONED POETIC THOUGHT with
Expulsive Form, Orotund Quality, Energetic and Impassioned Force, Radical, Final, or Intermittent
Stress, Middle and High Pitch, Moderate and Rapid Movement.
5. That SHOUTING, CALLING, COMMANDING will require
Expulsive Form, Orotund Quality, Impassioned Force, Thorough Stress, High and Very High Pitch, Moderate and Rapid Movement.
6. That SICKNESS, FEEBLENESS, WEAKNESS will require
Effusive Form, Oral Quality, Subdued Force, Intermittent Stress, Low Pitch, and Slow Movement.
7. That STILLNESS, SECRECY, SUPPRESSED FEAR with
Effusive Form, Aspirate Quality, Subdued Force, Thorough Stress, Low Pitch, Slow Movement.
8. That the MALIGNANT PASSIONS-ANGER, REVENGE, SCORN, DEFIANCE, HATE, etc., etc.-must be given with Expulsive and Explosive Forms, Pectoral or Guttural Quality; the other elements varying according to the intensity of the passion.
1. With what combination must Pathos be given?
2. What Didactic Thought?
3. What S illness?
4. What Argument?
5. What Impassioned Poetic Thought?
6. What Calling?
7. What Narrative?
8. What a selection both Narrative and Pathetic?
9. With what combination Devotion?
10. Do all persons who express correctly the above styles of thought and feeling illustrate the combinations here taught?
11. Suppose they have never heard of them?
12. Will we be more likely to give them correctly if we know them
than if we do not?
While it is impossible to express thought and feeling appropriately and impressively without the perfect illustration and correct combination of the Essential Elements, yet it does not follow that, because they are so given, excellence of expression will be the necessary result.' An utterance may combine the elements correctly, it may illustrate them perfectly and yet be monotonous, wearisome, and even positively unpleasant. Something more than correct combination and illustration is necessary. They are essential, but not sufficient.
The elements are to expression what the processes, Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication, and Division, are to the solution of problems, or the notes of the scale to a tune. Problems cannot be solved without the processes, tunes cannot be composed without the notes. But the mere fact that the processes are employed does not assure the correctness of the result; the arrangement of a certain number of notes does not constitute a pleasing and impressive tune. It is the correctness of the processes, the skillful arrangement of the notes, that is as important as the processes and the notes themselves. So it is in utterance; there must be a skillful blending of the elements, a pleasing variety, a happy adjustment of light and shade. This, for want of a better name, has been termed
Grouping. Grouping may be defined as the modulation of the voice in the same combination or in different combinations which renders the utterance both pleasing and impressive. It consists of slight changes generally (though occasionally of marked ones), not of Pitch chiefly, as is the case in music, but of Force, Quality, Stress, Movement, and sometimes Form. It is to Elocution what the composition of the tune is to music, the originating, the creating, the divine part. It is the all-important part of expression, the highest, the most difficult attainment.' To know the Essential Elements, in their illustration and application, is child's play (and every child should know them thoroughly) as compared with the mastery of Grouping.' After all that has been presented in the previous pages has been thoroughly mastered, then the real study of Elocution begins.! It were casy to sing after one has learned to illustrate the notes of the scale and some one else has composed the tune ; but to compose the tune, and compose it, too, while you sing, “ Ay, there's the rub!” And yet this is just what excellence in reading, in speaking, in recitation, in acting, in conversation implies. He who excels in vocal expression illustrates in every utterance the combined power of the musical composer and the singer. When Edwin Booth reads Hamlet, recites it, acts it (what you will, they are all the same), he illustrates in every personation the genius of Verdi when he composed, and the artistic skill of Patti when she sings. He groups while he recites—to borrow the language of music, he composes as he sings.
Elocution would be a comparatively easy study if, in addition to the explanation, illustration, and application of the elements, there could be arranged and set down, as a tune in music for each and every selection, a pleasing and impressive Grouping. But this cannot be done.
Grouping is so multiform that no particular grouping can be said to be the best, nor could it be reproduced if it were.
No one groups the same selection twice in the same way.
The same general outline may tained, but the shading will always be different.' Grouping is, as it were, a kaleidoscope in which Form, Quality, Force, Stress, Pitch, and Movement are the bits of glass which never twice present the saine combination, and the effects of which are never twice precisely alike. However excellently we may recite a selection, that rendition is lost as soon as uttered. It cannot be recalled. We may improve it, but our best groupings, like “the thoughts that most thrill our existence ere we can frame them into language, are gone.” Booth’s last night's Hamlet was not like the one of the night before, and no two were the same.
Again, no two persons group alike. They may read the same selection equally well, but their groupings will differ and cannot be exchanged. Grouping is susceptible of cultivation, but not of imitation.
For a pupil to copy his teacher's grouping, or a fawner his favorite's, is simply to give a feeble echo, a parrot-like performance, a copy, a chromo of an artist's production. In the study of grouping, more than anywhere else in Elocution, the pupil must rely on his own native talent, his æsthetic taste, his originality. In grouping, Elocution rises to a divine art and soars above human imitation, and one flash of originality kindles expression into a flame that thrills like an electric shock.
All instruction on this subject must be more or less vague, it can on.y be suggestive ; illustrative, not absolute. There are no rules to guide, no principles to decide.
Some illustrations will be given, but even they cannot be followed with unerring certainty.