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The Two Sources of Delsarte's Lessons: observations and metaphysics

Franck Waille About the author

ABSTRACT

This text presents the expressive work of Delsarte and its two main sources: an empirical system of observation and a theoretical framework of a metaphysical nature. We present Delsarte's empirical system of observation which was conceived in the first years of his life, going through a decisive change during his studies at the Paris Conservatoire. We also describe the way Delsarte, based on his observations, on the one hand, was able to escape an enslaving educational system focused on the imitation of teachers, and, on the other, re-trained his singing voice which had been ruined by the official singing school. This article articulates the theoretical framework of Delsarte, of a metaphysical order, presenting its origin in his conversion to Catholicism, in which the human body occupies the central stage. Indeed, observations and metaphysics are combined in Delsarte's work to substantiate his whole teaching method and to define the general dynamics of his work: the spiritualisation of human beings through art.

Keywords:
Rules of Expression; Art; Metaphysics; François Delsarte; Dance

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