Siegfried is alone, portent and pensive. He longs to find his place within the real world, but is disturbed by his feelings of being the outsider. Friends begin to gather ahead of a celebration for Siegfried's closest friend, Benno. As the party builds and Benno enjoys the attention of his companions, he tries to encourage Siegfried to put aside his insecurities and join the fun, but Siegfried remains removed and consumed by his own thoughts. As the party begins to disperse, Benno and the others decide to continue elsewhere. Siegfried remains behind alone in contemplation, before choosing to go in search of his own solitude.
It is night - and under the cover of darkness Siegfried sees a beautiful woman by the lake. Goddess-like and barely human, she is the Swan Queen, Odette, replenishing her powers from the waters of the lake. She morphs between forms both human and swan. Siegfried approaches and Odette is startled, yet unafraid. He is captivated by her grace, her vitality and her power. She is increasingly enchanted by his tenderness and curious about this human soul. As their feelings develop Siegfried finds himself surrounded by a multitude of swans, radiating the spirit of Odette. The night draws to an end and Odette tells Siegfried she must depart. To ensure they will meet again, she entrusts to him a very precious stone. This keepsake signifies their absolute trust and devotion and will always allow them to find each other.