OPERA SEARCH

Composer List


Title


Genre List


Opera Length



Advanced Search

*Deutsch

Photo: Phil Schexnyder
Dallas Opera 1998, Frederica von Stade / Elisabeth Söderström / Richard Stilwell

Argento, Dominick

The Aspern Papers (1987)

Duration: 116 minutes
Opera in two acts

Libretto by the composer based on the novella by Henry James (E)

Scoring
Major roles: dramS,2lyrM,lyrT,Bar,B; minor roles: S,B; chorus 2(II=picc).2(II=corA).2(II=bcl).2(II=dbn)-3.2.2.1-timp.perc(2):SD/BD/ tamb/tgl/bell tree/crot/glsp/chimes/large bell/steel plate(or anvil)/ cyms/susp.cym/tam-t/wind chime(bamboo)/maracas-pft(=cel)-harp-strings.
Abbreviations (PDF).


Territory
This work is available from Boosey & Hawkes for the world.



World Premiere
11/19/1988
Music Hall, Dallas, TX
Mark Lamos, dir / Elisabeth Soderstrom, Frederica von Stade, Katherine Ciesinski, Richard Stilwell
Conductor: Nicola Rescigno
Company: Dallas Opera

Roles

JULIANA BORDEREAU, an opera singerSoprano
ASPERN, a composerTenor
BARELLI, an impresarioBass-Baritone
SONIA, a singer; Barelli's mistressMezzo-Soprano
TINA, Juliana's nieceMezzo-Soprano
THE LODGER, a critic and biographerBaritone
PASQUALE, The Lodger's servant and gardener (also Painter)Bass
OLIMPIA (also off-stage voice of Juliana in Prologue I)Soprano
Chorus (offstage)


Time and Place
1835 and 1895; a villa on the shores of Lake Como, Italy


Synopsis
Juliana Bordereau, a former prima donna and mistress of the composer Aspern, is living with her spinster niece Tina in a villa on the edge of Lake Como. A stranger appears, requesting that the women rent him a room. The lodger is a scholar and biographer of Aspern, and believes that Juliana may possess the score of an operatic masterpiece—believed lost—that Aspern wrote for her shortly before his death sixty years earlier. The action alternates between two time periods: 1895, when the lodger is attempting to discover whether a score of Aspern's opera Medea exists, and 1835, where we see the young Juliana and Aspern, learn about a relationship between Aspern and a soprano, Sonia, and learn more about the opera Medea. Juliana dies, and Tina suggests that the stranger may have the score if he will marry her. He rejects her offer and plans to leave the next day. In the morning, he tells Tina that he has changed his mind and must have the score. She tells him it is too late, and he departs. Later, alone in her music room, Tina drops the score of the opera—page by page—into a blazing fire.


Press Quotes
“The Aspern Papers is…beautiful. It opens with a gentle shimmer, like light on water, that swells to an aching lushness.”
Washington Post

"extraordinarily beautiful…"
Dallas Morning News


Moods
Dramatic, Romantic


Subjects
Relationships, Society, Literary, Music/Arts






Items on Sale

Aspern Papers(Vocal Score)> Details
Mailing List

Sign up for news updates and offers via email

SIGN UP
Audio Visual Gallery
Get Adobe Flash player
ONLINE SCORES

Explore our library of over 1000 online scores

VIEW SCORES
FAQ | Contact Us | Links | About Us | Shop Directory | Careers | Terms of use | RSS Index