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Impersonators are known as look-alikes, impressionists, imitators tribute artists and wannabees. The interest may have originated with the need or desire to see a celebrity who has died. One of the most prominent examples of this phenomenon is the case of Elvis Presley. Today we are impersonating Greta Garbo. Our model is Rebekah.
Greta Lovisa Gustafsson was born in Stockholm, Sweden on September 18, 1905. She was 14 when her father died, leaving the family destitute. Greta was forced to leave school and go to work in a department store. The store used her for her modeling abilities for newspaper ads. She had no film aspirations until she appeared in an advertising short at that same department store while she was still a teenager.
She had no film aspirations until she appeared in an advertising short at that same department store while she was still a teenager. This led to another short film when Erik A. Petschler, a comedy director, saw the film. He gave her a small part in the film, Luffarpetter (1922). Encouraged by her own performance she applied for and won a scholarship in a Swedish drama school. While there she appeared in two films, En Lyckoriddare (1921) and Luffarpetter (1922) the following year. Both were small parts, but it was a start. Finally famed Swedish director, Mauritz Stiller, pulled her from drama school for the leading role in Gosta Berlings Saga (1924). At 18, Greta was on a roll.
Greta continued to give intensified performances in whatever was handed her. The next year Greta was cast in another hit Grand Hotel (1932). But it was MGM’s Anna Karenina (1935) where she, perhaps, gave the performance of her life. She was absolutely breathtaking in the title role as a woman torn between two lovers and her son. Greta starred in Ninotchka (1939) which showcased her comedic side. It wasn’t until two years later she made what was to be her last film that being Two-Faced Woman (1941), another comedy.
After World War II, Greta, by her own admission, felt that the world had changed perhaps forever and she retired, never again to face the camera. She would work for the rest of her life to perpetuate the Garbo mystique. Her films, she felt, had their proper place in history and would gain in value. She abandoned Hollywood and moved to New York City. She spent time gardening flowers and vegetables. In 1954, Greta was given a special Oscar for past unforgettable performances. She even penned her biography in 1990. On April 15, 1990, Greta died of natural causes in New York and with it the “Garbo Mystique”. She was 84.
|M|akeup |P|hotography |H|air + Geino Äotsch
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Impersonating Greta | Featuring: Rebekah Äotsch