Rudolf Steiner on the Tone Eurythmy Lecture Course
Report from the Nachrichtenblatt (News sheet)
...Now in the Section for Speech and Music, of which
Frau Marie Steiner is the director, it was felt intrinsically necessary
to arrange a course on tone eurythmy ...
I shall briefly report
here on the aims and intentions of it. In the art of eurythmy, speech
eurythmy has been developed to a certain extent. We are our own most
severe critics, and realize that whatever we manage to achieve in this
realm is merely a beginning. But what has begun must be developed further.
Less progress has been
made so far with tone eurythmy, ‘visible singing’, than
with speech eurythmy, ‘visible word’. So that the beginning which
we have achieved can be continued in the right way, the stage at which
tone eurythmy is now practised had to be taken a step further. This
was the purpose of the lecture course. Consequently the nature of the
musical element had to be indicated, too. For in eurythmy, music is
made visible, and we have to feel where music has its true source in
the human being, if its fundamental essence is to be made visible.
Tone eurythmy makes visible
that which is invisible, but lives audibly, in music. It is just here
that we are in the gravest danger of becoming unmusical. I hope to have
demonstrated in the lectures that when music flows over into movement,
the urge arises to reject all that is unmusical in music and to make
visible only ‘pure music’. Those who hold the view that music ceases
when the audible is carried over into visible movement will certainly
have reservations about tone eurythmy as such. This view, however, is
not in the deepest sense an artistic one, for someone who inwardly experiences
art must take delight in every extension of artistic sources and their
forms. It is a fact that music, like all true art, springs forth from
man's innermost being. His life can reveal this in the most varying
ways. What wants to sing in the human being wants to be presented in
forms of movement too, and only those possibilities of movement that
lie in man's organism are called forth in speech and tone eurythmy.
It is the human being himself who reveals his essence here. The human
form is only truly understood as arrested movement, and only the movement
of the human being reveals the meaning of his form. It may be said:
Someone who disputes the justification of tone and speech eurythmy refuses
to allow the human being to appear in his totality. Materialism does
not permit the spirit to appear in human understanding, and the rejection
of eurythmy as an art that can justifiably stand on a par with the other
arts no doubt has its origin in a similar conviction.
It is to be hoped that
the eurythmists have received some inspiration from this course, and
thus some contribution has been made towards the further development
of our art of eurythmy.