The Suppression of the Powerful Feminine

| December 18, 2012 | Calendar

The story of Camille Claudel, the brilliant 19th Century French sculptor and scandalous mistress/artistic collaborator of Auguste Rodin, inspired choreographer Dominic Walsh to create his exquisite ballet based on Claudels' remarkable, yet tragic, life. In this lecture, Mr. Walsh will discuss his fascination with Claudel and why he was drawn to translate her story into movement.

The threat posed by the powerful feminine is central to Walsh's contemporary ballet Camille Claudel. In spite of her creative success, as there was never a question of her genius, Claudel's aspirations were repeatedly derailed by suppression and betrayals--by Rodin, by the French government, and most tragically by her family.

Her story reflects her time. It also resonates strongly in contemporary America where women have achieved real gains but powerful women, still perceived as threats, are so often marginalized. In this presentation, Dominic Walsh will show film clips from the ballet's production and discuss the paradox of creative expression as both a symbol of this suppression and an essential element in healing it.

As a principal dancer with Houston Ballet for over a decade, Dominic Walsh received national and international praise for his interpretations of both classical and contemporary roles. Walsh burst onto the choreographic scene when he won the prestigious Choo-San Goh award in 1998, and he is now hailed as a leading choreographer who is pushing the boundaries of ballet into new realms of theatricality. He won a second Choo-San Goh Award in 2007 and was one of only three choreographers to receive a 2008 Princess Grace Award.

This presentation has been generously underwritten by Lucie M. Dunwoody and Lise Liddell.

For more information please visit


Photography by: