The tragic life of opera singer Maria Callas, an unremitting tale of torment and suffering, is spotlighted in a new biopic with an eerily alike Angelina Jolie in the title role. The screenplay by Steven Knight, best known for Peaky Blinders, focuses on Callas’s final days, her heart broken by Aristotle Onassis, her voice gone and addicted to drugs which ultimately killed her at 53.
Maria Callas was born 2 December 1923 6am New York, a replacement child but unwanted as a girl after the death of a previous son. Her ferociously ambitious and destructive mother saw her as solely there to maintain her. She pimped out her older sister and attempted to sell Maria’s virginity during the war to soldiers after they returned to Greece.
Maria’s rise to fame in 1949 led to a decade of triumphs but strained her voice until audiences turned against her in the 1960s. Early on in her success she lost seven stone, had plastic surgery and capped her teeth to reinvent herself as a fashion icon. An early marriage fizzled out and she discovered too late he had squandered her money. Her career was turbulent with cancellations, rivalries, a public firing as her reputation as a prima donna obscured her talent.
She met Onassis in 1959, when she was in a career dip and stayed as his partner on and off for nine years as he bedded Princess Lee Radziwill, the younger sister of Jacqueline Kennedy as well as being a client of Madame Claude’s Champs-Élysées brothel, before marrying Jackie.
Deeply unhappy, Callas tried to end her life, the first of many suicide attempts. Returning to Onassis at one point, she suffered through his violent beatings, in part fuelled by the drugs he took including testosterone. “It was a co-dependency that neither could break.”
After Onassis’s death in 1975, she retreated from public life and became addicted to the sedative Mandrax which she knew could be fatal, if mixed with alcohol. She died on September 16, 1977, aged 53.
What leaps out of her chart is a Mars Saturn conjunction in Libra suggesting a life blighted by early cruelty to which she clearly became addicted – both destructive and self-destructive – like a moth to a flame. And Pluto in her 8th suggesting a dramatic and potentially tragic life which gave her influence out in society and resourcefulness but one riddled by bitter entanglements.
Her saving grace was her Sun, Jupiter and Mercury in Sagittarius which would give her a streak of optimism otherwise she’d never have survived the constant put downs throughout her life. A 4th house Uranus would make it difficult to find a settled home life after the disruptions of her childhood.
Her 10th house Virgo Moon suited a public career.
Aristotle Onassis, 20 January 1906 10 am Smyma, Turkey, had a Sun Venus in Capricorn with a Sagittarius Moon. His Moon was conjunct her Jupiter and Sun giving her a semblance of reassurance; but his Sun squared her masochistic Saturn Mars. And even more significantly his Neptune was conjunct her 8th house Pluto and his Pluto was on the cusp of her 8th so he mesmerised, trapped and controlled her.
Their relationship chart was ruinous with a composite Pluto opposition Mercury, Saturn, Sun, Mars – egregiously damaging and harmful. Only slightly ameliorated by a composite Moon trine Jupiter.
Frankly it is a miracle she survived into her fifties. What a tempestuous, unhappy life.
Angelina Jolie will resonate to her angst given her own troubled childhood, with her Moon Mars square Saturn and opposition Pluto.
Just as a brief add on to be expanded when I find time to focus on the 8th house. Jackie Onassis, 28 July 1929 2.30pm Southampton, NY, horrified a public, shaken by JFK’s death and enamoured of her elegant image by marrying Ari Onassis. Oddly there are similarities with JFK – both he and Ari had Jupiter falling in her 7th house of marriage. Ari has Pluto conjunct her 8th house Venus and his Neptune also in her 8th. JFK had his Venus on the cusp of her 8th and his Pluto also in her 8th. She was attracted to unfaithful men. Perhaps like her father John Bouvier, 19 May 1891, whose Mars was conjunct her 8th house Venus and his Neptune Pluto in Gemini were in her 7th on the cusp of her 8th. The old tangled patterns repeat especially when the 8th house is involved.