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“We want to dispel the myth that mimes only live in boxes,” said Joia M. Hertz ’04, a member of MIT’s newly-formed miming club, MIMEtype.
“It’s just acting without speaking,” said Hertz. “We can even do more than actors. We can have whatever prop we want. We could have an elephant. Show me the acting troupe that can get an elephant whenever they want.”
Vanessa J. Cheung ’02 Justin K. Werfel G, Aaron T. Santos ’01, and Hertz formed the club last spring after attending an IAP miming workshop held by Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Vladimir Bulovic, who has in the past been involved with the Princeton Mime Company.
The four failed to find an official miming group in the area, so they decided to continue their miming studies via a new student group.
“It looked like something fun, we did it, and it became something we wanted to continue,” said Hertz.
MIMEtype, which meets once per week, counts among its current membership the four original members, but hopes to attract more miming enthusiasts this fall.
During tonight’s Activities Midway, the four will perform the pieces “Xerox” and “Morning Toast.”
No miming experience is necessary for membership in the organization, but most all of their members have been interested in miming and circus acts in the past.
MIMEtype’s Spring 2001 premiere performance was entitled “No Noise is Good Noise,” while the students’ IAP performance bore the fitting title “Your Place or MIME?”
Hertz, who originally wanted to call their IAP act “MIME-encapsulated performance,” says of the group’s name, “we obviously wanted something nerdy.” They settled on MIMEtype, a pun that refers to Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions, an official Internet standard for how messages must be formatted in order to be exchanged between different e-mail systems.
MIMEtype’s members want to convey the message that not only is miming a valid performing art, but that this particular line of acting leaves much for the imagination.
“The reality of miming is not so much in the physical world as it is in the audience’s mind,” said Hertz.