Guide to "Madam Satan" film photographs featuring Theodore Kosloff as "Electricity" C0468
Published by George Mason University Libraries
"Madam Satan" was a Pre-Code Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer film directed by Cecil B. DeMille. The film premiered in 1930 and is considered one of the odder films by DeMille (it serves as his only movie-musical) and the studio as a whole. The plot centers around a woman attempting to win back and teach a lesson to her unfaithful husband by attending a masquerade ball in a Zeppelin, disguised as "Madam Satan." The film is known for its strange dynamics and creative art direction, including the "ballet mecanique" scene. This scene, which occurs during the masquerade ball, features Theodore Kosloff as "Electricity" in high Art Deco costume, along with other dancers dressed similarly.
Theodore Kosloff was a Russian ballet dancer. Born in 1882 in Moscow, he danced at Moscow's Imperial Theater, and eventually toured with the Ballets Russes. In 1909 he met the film director Cecil B. DeMille, which kicked off a personal friendship and long term professional collaboration. Kosloff began as a choreographer for silent films and Broadway shows, eventually acting in said films. His role as "Electricity" in Madam Satan was his last major film appearance. With the advent of sound film, Kosloff retired from Hollywood and opened up a successful ballet studio in Los Angeles, where he had a commanding presence in the local ballet scene. Kosloff died in 1956.
Two black and white photographs featuring the Russian ballet dancer Theodore Kosloff in the role of "Electricity" in the 1930 film "Madam Satan." The first photo features Kosloff and the rest of the dancers from the film's Art Deco "ballet mecanique" scene. The second photo features Kosloff individually posing in costume. Both photos are inscribed by Kosloff reading "-To Bob-from Theodore Kosloff 19 15/1x 30 Dallas, Tex."
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Madam Satan (Motion picture)
Motion pictures -- United States
"Madam Satan" film photographs featuring Theodore Kosloff as "Electricity," C0468, Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University Libraries.
Purchased by Steve Gerber from Schubertiade Music in March 2015.
Processing completed by Amanda Brent in February 2021. EAD markup completed by Amanda Brent in February 2021. This item was formerly part of the Performing Arts Manuscript Materials collection, C0215.
Levine, Debra. "Theodore Kosloff cut a fouette figure." Los Angeles Times, April 5, 2009. Accessed February 22, 2021. https://www.latimes.com/entertainment/la-ca-kosloff5-2009apr05-story.html.
"Madam Satan (1930) Review." Pre-Code.com, March 22, 2013. Accessed February 22, 2021. http://pre-code.com/madam-satan-1930-review/.
"Theodore Kosloff." Hollywood Walk of Fame. Accessed February 22, 2021. https://walkoffame.com/theodore-kosloff/.
"Theodore Kosloff & Cecil B. DeMille Meet Madam Satan." American Cinematheque, 2014. Accessed February 22, 2021. http://americancinemathequecalendar.com/content/theodore-kosloff-cecil-b-demille-meet-madam-satan-madam-satan.