Rose Beuret, long life companion of Rodin, was not initially part of the plan.
After all the opera already had two main female charachters, the old and the young Camille.
But one night, while writing the duet in the second act between Camille and Rodin, she simply burst in through the door. I could see her and feel her vomiting rage on the woman who was stealing her husband.
It was a game changer. The following scenes just came as a result and the whole second act took shape.
When I look at it now, her charachter seems to be of no importance at first: she’s not in the first act and she comes in as a sorry monster at the beginning of the second. But her passion is soon revealed and with it, the importance she plays in the downfall of Camille.
I’ve never been in love with her, but I certainly respect her: she stood by her husband for a lifetime, despite his numerous infidelities and fought for him to the end. Rodin only married her 3 years before her death.
A woman of gumption and passion in her own way.
Maybe she was not able to ignite Rodin’s fire the way Camille did – after all these two had a major thing in common: sculpting.
But she took care of everything else, allowing him to live the life he lived.
Check out this rare footage of Rodin’s at work.