One of the most important mimes in the world has died. Stay with me on this.

I hate mimes. I’m with Shakes the Clown on this.

Mime memes are as old as miming itself. But there’s one mime to whom we rock fans owe a debt of gratitude: Lindsay Kemp.

Who?

When David Bowie was searching for his voice during his failed folksinger phase in the 1960s, Bowie fell under Kemp’s spell. Bowie became Kemp’s student in 1966 who proceeded to teach him the art of moving onstage, the basics of choreography, and how to attract and hold and audience’s attention.

Later, Kemp help Bowie created the production for his groundbreaking Ziggy Stardust tour of 1972-73. The dancers in this video are from Kemp’s company.

https://youtu.be/6VrqCBsbeuc

Bowie wasn’t Kemp’s only high-profile student. In the 1970s, he was called to mentor a teenaged Kate Bush. The choreography for videos like “Wuthering Heights?” Pure Kemp.

Kemp stayed active well into his senior years. This weekend, though, Kemp passed away in Italy at the age of 80.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

One thought on “One of the most important mimes in the world has died. Stay with me on this.

  • August 27, 2018 at 12:07 am
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    I saw Lindsay Kemp in his theatrical production, Flowers, in Toronto 1978. Amazing! Lindsay was once arrested and the cop said “you have the right to remain silent….”

    Reply

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