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The Most Evil Odile


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#1 MakarovaFan

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 12:16 PM

Who is the most evil Odile you've seen? I've yet to see a truly evil, complex and treacherous Odile. She's such a challenging character to play, not to mention the technical difficulty of Petipa's choreography. The role demands that she be seductive, magnetic and wicked, plus project enough of Odette's persona to trick Siegfried. This is no easy feat.

I've seen some superbly danced Odiles like Dvorovenko who fearlessly tackled the choreography and looked stunning, but didn't fill the role enough. How I'd love to see footage of Shelest dancing the part, great actress that she was.

Please talk about Odile's you've seen who capture the cunning and evil well.

#2 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 26 November 2009 - 10:56 PM

My all-time standard for Odile is and will always be Miss Rosario Suarez, our beloved and controversial "Charin". Her Swan Lake used to put Havana on her feet...(much more to Mme's disapproval IMO).

http://www.youtube.c...feature=related

(From 5:55 to 6:09... :angry2: )

#3 lmspear

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Posted 27 November 2009 - 12:18 PM

Who is the most evil Odile you've seen? I've yet to see a truly evil, complex and treacherous Odile. She's such a challenging character to play, not to mention the technical difficulty of Petipa's choreography. The role demands that she be seductive, magnetic and wicked, plus project enough of Odette's persona to trick Siegfried.


On video Maya Plisetskaya.

#4 bart

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Posted 27 November 2009 - 03:21 PM

On video Maya Plisetskaya.

I agree with Imspear. The strength and intensity were scary.

However, "evil" can be expressed in many ways, in art as in life. For the approach that says "When I'm good I'm very good, but when I'm bad, I'm better": Natalia Makarova.

By quoting Mae West, I DON'T mean to suggest anything campy or over-the-top. On stage as well as on video, Makarova's Odile was rather pure, uncluttered, and classical. She was also genuinely, viscerally alluring. She toyed with her villainy like she toyed with the Prince.


Makarova fan, what did you think about Makarova Odile?

#5 papeetepatrick

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Posted 27 November 2009 - 03:57 PM

However, "evil" can be expressed in many ways, in art as in life. For the approach that says "When I'm good I'm very good, but when I'm bad, I'm better": Natalia Makarova.

By quoting Mae West, I DON'T mean to suggest anything campy or over-the-top. On stage as well as on video, Makarova's Odile was rather pure, uncluttered, and classical. She was also genuinely, viscerally alluring. She toyed with her villainy like she toyed with the Prince.


I like this idea, because interesting to think about ballerinas who think their Odile is more important than their Odette. While this doesn't sound like the 'right artistic attitude' or have the requisite integrity, then neither really does 'when I'm bad I'm better' (which may mean Makarova's Odile was even better than her Odette), but it might mean that the devil was gotten all the way into the Odile in certain cases. And there are enough Swan Lakes to satisfy those who prefer Odette (as is generally recommended), so that I'd like to hear, as an accompaniment to this (if that's all right), about ballerinas whose Odile is so fully realized in her evil that it is surely better than their Odette. I know I always prefer Odile, if I must confess, if she's danced superbly. Interesting, though--it's Makarova's Odette I remember. On video, I like Mezentseva, who is able to be very creepy with her extreme mannerism. This elongated look is very good for suggesting superficiality and the vacuous posturings that are always a part of 'evil types', from all the Lucifers and 'Beautiful Satans' to Hannah Arendt's 'banality of evil', which can surely be fanciful while banal.

#6 Chaconne

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 10:37 AM

Not to sound too semantic, I think it depends on what you think of as the evil in Odile. In terms of pure "oooooooooh.. scarrrrrry!" Marie-Claude Pietragalla gets my vote.

For me, Odile is evil not only because she is on the side of Rothbart and thus an accomplice in keeping Odette in bondage, but also because she exploited the Prince through his best hopes. Deception in Odile is a big part of the character.

I respect the Black Swan/White Swan dichotomy, which has its own artistic merits and embodies two basic types of ballerinas, yet dramatically, the story is less clearcut. Tchaikovsky's original music for the black swan is in no way Va-va-voom let's-get-the-Man.

So Odiles who bare their fangs and flap their wings are scary but not credible. You are really going to succeed at seducing a guy like that, certainly not in full court. We audience know the story but the Prince does not. I found the Odiles who look almost like their Odettes are among the most evil--here is a dream of a woman . . . and yet something is wrong with her. So Odiles such as Fonteyn, Evelyn Hart and Alexandrova, who are less emphatic on the vixen factor, nonetheless convey evil in light of the bigger story. Agnes Letestu really saved her thunder for the final clap.

I would imagine Platel would be this type, too, just like her snake-in-the-petals Gamzatti.

#7 Ostrich

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Posted 28 November 2009 - 10:20 PM

On video, Alla Osipenko is pretty scary.

#8 MakarovaFan

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Posted 29 November 2009 - 06:19 PM

On video, Alla Osipenko is pretty scary.


Ostrich,

Where can I see Osipenko's Odile on video?

#9 Ostrich

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Posted 29 November 2009 - 10:58 PM

On video, Alla Osipenko is pretty scary.


Ostrich,

Where can I see Osipenko's Odile on video?


My mistake, I meant Alla Mikhailchenko! Why do these girl's names have to rhyme?? Zakharova, Makarova, Osipova, Novikova.....

#10 jsmu

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Posted 30 November 2009 - 04:36 PM

Surprisingly (because the Hamburg Ballet production/choreography was so awful), the brilliant Elizabeth Loscavio, even in a costume that resembled a wedding cake, was superb as Odile--and subtle. She was in the Makarova line of evil: she TOYED with her Prince, heartlessly, cruelly, with great pleasure, and with absolutely no over-the-top vamping or femme fatale schticks. It was almost disgusting to see how casually she played with him and made him her puppet.


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