Friday, 5 April 2013

Friday Five: Perfume

I am playing the character of Veronica Craye in the Tempo Theatre production of Agatha Christie's The Hollow. She will be a challenge to play and is variously described as "a well-known film star", "a very beautiful woman and knows it", "a damned egoist out to grab everything she could get", "a mixture of opulence and self-advertisment", and "a bitch of the first water". Such fun!

In getting to grips with a character, it's the little things that help an actor to find a way in to play them. Agatha Christie adapted this play from her own novel, in which she expands a little on each of her suspects (as, apart from the victim, that is what they all are). She writes of Veronica's perfume that it is "expensive but cloying, overpowering like her personality."

This leads me to want to find the correct perfume to wear, as I feel that might give me an insight into the woman. Scent is a powerful thing and we make assumptions from a single sniff based on a complex combination of memory and assoication. I think perhaps Christian Dior's Poison might be the thing to wear as Veronica. If you have any suggestions please let me know. Meanwhile, I've been thinking about perfume in general,

5 Favourite Perfumes:
  1. Coco Madamoiselle by Chanel - it's what I'm wearing now (as are Kate Moss and Keira Knightley, if you believe the adverts - video included below especially for Mr Smartypants). Described as classy, elegant, citrusy, sexy, fresh and feminine in reviews I've read - I like a comment about this being the transition fragrance from cloying sweet girly to floral old lady.
  2. Champs Elysees by Guerlain - apparently it is a fruity-floral fragrance in which mimosa, rose, almond, and forest fruits are followed by melon and exotic fruits. I like the bottle too. And the name.
  3. Vanderbilt by Gloria Vanderbilt - I used to wear this when I was younger and it reminds me of youth and living in upstate New York. Review sites describe it as romantic, dreamy, floral-oriental with notes of cinnamon, citrus, wood, leather, smoke and pineapple, which sounds like an interesting combination. It was first released in 1982 and so is now considered old-fashioned (which means it's 'reasonably-priced' and sold at the chemist).
  4. Miracle by Lancôme - spicy, gingery, peppery and different. A touch of floral and musk makes it a little bit flirty. Men notice this perfume in a good way, and comment favourably on it, as in 'You smell good', which is as eloquent a compliment as some men give.
  5. No. 5 by Chanel - It's quite simply a classic. Big and bold and uncompromising, you know when you've encountered it. And my mum wears it. These are all reasons to love it but although it apparently smells different on everybody, I can't ever wear it because in my mind it 'belongs' to mother.


blurooferika said...

I know what you mean about not wanting to wear a perfume you associate with another person. For me that would be Opium by Yves Saint Laurent, worn by my mother.

For Veronica, I think Poison is a good choice. Another one that's overpowering—and that was everywhere in the mid-90's—was Lancome Trésor, but on second thoughts, that might too sweet and not bitchy enough for this femme fatale.

Anonymous said...

I have only been able to wear two perfumes, others that I have tried have given me horrendous headaches and made me feel, and sometimes be,sick.
When I was young I wore Tabu, it was spicy, curvaceous and dramatic. Now I am older I love the smell and variety of Number 5, it picks up my mood and has a sympathetic nose. I don't feel dressed without it.