“Move over, Natalie Portman: You may be favored for the Oscar in Black Swan, but there’s a real-life, flesh-and-blood ballerina generating heat as the swan queen!” says Jocelyn Novek, one of the writers quoted by Milan-based arts blogger Graham Spicer in a roundup of praise for the remarkable Odette/Odile of Sara Mearns.
NYCB’s Mearns is part of a young crop of Swan Queens who are revitalising and leaving their artistic mark on this challenging double role, at a time when Black Swan effect means interest in Swan Lake is bigger than ever. And with so many different productions around the globe, those who are new to the “Lake” are really spoilt for choice. In this slideshow we look at some of these productions, with focus on the iconic figures of Odette and Odile.
Over to you: who are your favorite Swan Queens of recent times?
With special thanks to all ballet companies credited in this slideshow.