Nora, Op.30 (Fries, Albin)

Contents

Performances

Recordings

MP3 file (audio)
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Performers Thomas Moser, Morten Larsen, Elisabeth Flechl, Elisabeth Kulman
Publisher Info. Albin Fries
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Synthesized/MIDI

Selections - Act 1

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Performers virtual orchestra sounds
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MP3 file (audio)
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Performers Thomas Moser, tenor - Morten Larsen, baritone
Publisher Info. Albin Fries
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Misc. Notes Stadtpark Vienna, autumn 1910, children are playing in the park (children´s choir). The renowned composer Arthur Sonnenfels (tenor) sits on the parkbench with his valet André and bemoans that he has hitherto not realized his life´s dream: to express love through music. He recalls his erstwhile love Nora whom he met many years ago in this very park, but was compelled to leave her. Since then his otherwise successful life has been devoid of feelings.
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MP3 file (audio)
DocM (2011/12/22)

MP3 file (audio)
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Performers Elisabeth Flechl, soprano - Elisabeth Kulman, mezzosoprano
Publisher Info. Albin Fries
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Misc. Notes The young ladies Desirée and Laura are on their way back from the funeral of Desirée's mother. Desirée relates what her mother confessed on her death-bed: that she, Desirée, is not the child of her supposed father, but rather the love child of her mother´s lover from her youth. Desirée shows Laura a medallion given to her by her dying mother.
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MP3 file (audio)
DocM (2011/12/22)

Performers Thomas Moser, tenor - Morten Larsen, baritone
Publisher Info. Albin Fries
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Misc. Notes Arthur spots Desirée and believes to have recognized the young Nora in her. Overwhelmed, he suffers a heart attack and collapses. Desirée hurries to help him.
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MP3 file (audio)
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Performers virtual orchestra sounds
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Selections - Acts 2 and 3

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Performers Thomas Moser, tenor
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Performers virtual orchestra sounds
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MP3 file (audio)
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Sheet Music

Full Scores

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PMLP296618-Nora Vorspiel 1. Akt full score.pdf

Vocal Scores

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PMLP296618-Vorspiel.pdf
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General Information

Work Title Nora
Alternative. Title Opera lyrique
Composer Fries, Albin
Opus/Catalogue NumberOp./Cat. No. Op.30
Movements/SectionsMov'ts/Sec's 3 acts (5 tableaux)
Year/Date of CompositionY/D of Comp. 2010-11
Librettist Miriam Mollard
Language German
Average DurationAvg. Duration 120 minutes
Composer Time PeriodComp. Period Modern
Piece Style Romantic
Instrumentation late romantic orchestra

Misc. Comments

SYNOPSIS

Act 1

  • Tableau 1: Stadtpark Vienna, autumn 1910, children are playing in the park (children's choir).
The renowned composer Arthur Sonnenfels (tenor) sits on the parkbench with his valet André and bemoans that he has hitherto not realized his life's dream: to express love through music. He recalls his erstwhile love Nora whom he met many years ago in this very park, but was compelled to leave her. Since then his otherwise successful life has been devoid of feelings. The young ladies Desirée and Laura are on their way back from the funeral of Desirée's mother. Desirée relates what her mother confessed on her death-bed: that she, Desirée, is not the child of her supposed father, but rather the love child of her mother´s lover from her youth. Desirée shows Laura a medallion given to her by her dying mother. Arthur spots Desirée and believes to have recognized the young Nora in her. Overwhelmed, he suffers a heart attack and collapses. Desirée hurries to help him.
  • Tableau 2: Stadtpark twenty years earlier, around 1890.
A military band is playing a march. Three drunken soldiers appear, mocking several poorly-clad Galician students, one of whom is the young Arthur Sonnenfels (now mezzo). Since there is great poverty in Galicia, he and his friends had decided to emigrate. They are in Vienna to collect their visas before they continue for Brazil. Suddenly Arthur runs into the young Nora. It is love at first sight for both of them. Nora, however, is already engaged to be married, in accordance with her parents' wishes.
  • Tableau 3: Arthur's abode.
Nora and Arthur have spent the night together. They dream of a joint future after Arthur has succeeded in life and is able to maintain a wife. As Nora mentions her desire to have a child, however, ill feeling between them comes about. Following a seemingly rectifying love duet (he gives her a medallion), Arthur starts composing on the piano. Quiet and unnoticed, Nora packs her things and leaves him.

Act 2

  • Tableau 4: A salon in New York, 5 years later.
Arthur Sonnenfels (from now on again tenor), by now a celebrated composer, had written many letters to Nora, but never received any answer. One day all of his unopened letters are sent back to him in a small parcel. In an accompanying letter Nora's father demands that he stops writing to Nora as she has in the meantime married. Devastated, Arthur reluctantly decides to seek solace with other women. Nevertheless, in a fit of rage he chases away two female admirers who had offered themselves. Clara, another admirer, attempts with genuine compassion to comfort the downcast Arthur by pointing him towards God. Alone again, the incredulous Arthur appeals to God to provide proof of his existence. Since this does not happen, he reaches for morphine. Exhilarated, he has a vision of a love encounter with Nora. But he recognizes his delusion, renounces his love and buries himself in his work.

Act 3

  • Tableau 5: Vienna around 1910, Arthur's abode (Arthur is renting the same room he had twenty years ago, now luxuriously furnished - continuation of tableau 1, Act 1).
Desirée and André have brought Arthur home after his heart attack. A doctor explains to him that there is little hope for his failing heart. Arthur recognizes the medallion worn by Desirée as the one he had given to Nora, with his picture inside. It comes to light that Desirée is the child of Arthur and Nora. Desirée takes her leave and promises to visit Arthur on the following day. Arthur comes to realize that he has now grasped the essence of love. For the first time in his life he feels the all-embracing power of love. The music which he had wanted to write all his life in order to express absolute love, is now born in his mind. As he attempts to write down this music, he suffers another heart attack, dying before he can complete his work. The opera ends with an apotheosis of this love theme.