Discover the fascinating history behind this hilarious art form – including its real place of origin and original creators. It’s a story that goes all the way back to Ancient Greece and aboriginal tribes.
The most shocking fact is that the French may be masters of mime, but they cannot be credited with its invention. In fact, the art form has been practiced in Australia for the last 60,000 years as part of an aboriginal ceremony known as corroboree.
The event showcases dramatic representations of the mythical history of the tribe through mimed actions of hunting animals and catching fish, as well as imitating the movements made by the actual birds and animals themselves.
Its fascinating history is entwined with conquest, because when the Romans invaded Greece, they took mime back to Italy with them. They particularly developed its comedic and tragic aspect, giving rise to the famous Commedia dell’Arte in the early 1500s.
The art was soon claimed by Italian acrobatic, masked street performers – characters with exaggerated comical features who came to be known as Zanni. The introduction into French culture came in 1576 when a company of Italians, led by Flamino Scala, visited France with this art form.
The final chapter in its history came when Jean Gaspard Batiste Deburau, a famous acrobatic street performer, introduced the lovesick character Pierrot to French theatre. He performed from around 1819 to the year of his death at the Théâtre des Funambules, and played a major role in transforming mime to the art form it is known as today.
While mime artistry often makes use of chance situations – a passing car or a person – to elicit humour, it is not a spontaneous performance, but actually a rather complex endeavour.
Believe it or not but there are thousands of different movements which a mime artist must learn and memorise. It takes years to master it completely!
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.