Brother Lionel Logue

Discussion in 'Notable Freemasons' started by Blake Bowden, Nov 16, 2013.

  1. Blake Bowden

    Blake Bowden Administrator Staff Member

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    Lionel George Logue was an Australian speech therapist and stage actor who successfully treated, among others, King George VI, who had a pronounced stammer. Educated at Prince Alfred College, Lionel studied elocution with Edward Reeves who purged his voice of much of its Australian accent. In 1902 he became Reeves's secretary and assistant-teacher and studied at the Elder Conservatorium of Music. He later worked on a gold mine at Kalgoorlie, Western Australia.

    Settling in Perth, Logue taught elocution, public speaking and acting. He staged plays, recited Shakespeare and Dickens at concerts, and founded a public-speaking club. He also taught part time at the Young Men's Christian Association, at Scotch College and, from 1910, at Perth Technical School. In the following year he toured the world. A Christian Scientist, Logue was dedicated to healing. In World War I he treated returned soldiers afflicted with speech impediments caused by shell-shock. Using humor, patience and 'superhuman sympathy', he taught them exercises for the lungs and diaphragm, and to breathe sufficiently deeply to complete a sentence fluently.

    Logue practiced at 146 Harley Street, London, from 1924: the fees paid by his wealthy clients enabled him to accept poorer patients without charge. In 1926 the Duke of York consulted Logue about his stammer. The therapist diagnosed poor co-ordination between larynx and diaphragm, and asked him to spend an hour each day practicing rigorous exercises. The duke came to his rooms, stood by an open window and loudly intoned each vowel for fifteen seconds. Logue restored his confidence by relaxing the tension which caused muscle spasms. The duke's stammer diminished to occasional hesitations. Resonantly and without stuttering, he opened the Australian parliament in Canberra in 1927.

    Using tongue-twisters, Logue helped the duke to rehearse for his major speeches and coached him for the formal language of his coronation in 1937. At Westminster Abbey on 12 May, wearing the M.V.O. decoration given to him by King George VI on the previous night, Logue sat in the apse to encourage him during the ceremony. Before the King's radio broadcast that evening, Logue whispered to him: 'Now take it quietly, Sir'. Logue was a founder (1935) of the British Society of Speech Therapists and a founding fellow (1944) of the College of Speech Therapists; a Freemason, he was speech therapist to the Royal Masonic School, Bushey. Initiated, passed and raised in 1908, he became Worshipful Master in 1919 of St. George's Lodge (now J.D. Stevenson St. George's Lodge No.6, Western Australian Constitution).

    He retained his love of music and the theatre, and enjoyed walking and gardening. In World War II his practice shrank and he acted as an air-raid warden three nights a week. The 'slow, measured pace' which he had afforded the King's diction proved affecting in His Majesty's wartime broadcasts and speeches. Elevated to C.V.O. in 1944, Logue was with the King for the V.E.-Day broadcast on 8 May 1945. Their friendship was 'the greatest pleasure' of Logue's life. After his wife's death that year, Logue took up spiritualism. Survived by his three sons, he died on 12 April 1953 in London and was cremated.

    Logue's grandson, Mark, wrote a book with Peter Conradi about his grandfather's relationship with the Duke of York, who later became King George VI, entitled The King's Speech: How One Man Saved the British Monarchy. The short title was used for the 2010 British film The King's Speech, a historical drama written by David Seidler, in which Logue was played by Geoffrey Rush and his patient by Colin Firth. In February 2011, The King's Speech won four Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Actor for Colin Firth.

    Source: Wikipedia and http://adb.anu.edu.au/
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2013

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