The Grace of the Hunchback

Get lost in a 19th-century world of ballet, beauty,  and longing, as complex and ephemeral as lace. Read The Grace of the Hunchback, based on the real life of famous ballerina Marie Taglioni:


Inspired by the real life of dancer Marie Taglioni (1804-1884) who overcame scoliosis to become a prima ballerina. Marie and her father, the dictatorial Philippe, are credited with having invented the Romantic style of ballet: ethereal maidens, white tutus, dancing en pointe. This fictionalized version of Marie’s career explores her presence onstage, where she is considered a great beauty, and her misery offstage, where she’s a neglected ugly duckling. Though she marries a handsome nobleman, he only wants her for her money; yet her own passion for him remains true. Running parallel to Marie’s story is that of her maid, Lucette, who leaves service to become a successful courtesan in demimonde Paris. The two women have different approaches to life–one spiritual, the other material. Lucette fearlessly pursues glamor while Marie’s existence is dominated by her search for ideals, transcendence, and most of all love–even when she begins to doubt it exists.