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Carlson: Anna Karenina - An Opera in two acts

 
Carlson: Anna Karenina - An Opera in two acts-Opera Collection
ID: SIGCD154 (EAN: 635212015421)  | 2 CD | DDD
Released in: 2009
LABEL:
Signum Records
Collection:
Opera Collection
Composers:
CARLSON, David
Ensembles:
Opera Theatre of Saint Louis | The Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra
Conductors:
ROBERTSON, Steward
Other info:

An Opera in two acts by David Carlson. Libretto by Colin Graham
World Premiere Recording

Synopsis: Anna Karenina
ACT ONE
Prolog, Moscow, December. Anna visits her brother Stiva and his wife Dolly, hoping to save their marriage. A man falls under the train. When Anna meets Vronsky, she is so disturbed by the accident that she hardly notices him. He's very taken with her. 1.1 Stiva's house. Anna persuades Dolly to forgive Stiva's infidelity. 1.2 The ball at Betsy's, St. Petersburg, New Year, 1875. Levin proposes to Kitty and is refused because she is infatuated with Vronsky. Anna is compromised by Vronsky's too-obvious attentions. She is affected by his declarations but resists him. Karenin notices others' reactions. 1.3 At Karenin's. Karenin insists that Anna make an effort to preserve appearances for the sake of society. Trying to persuade her to open her heart to him, he discovers that it is locked against him. 2.1 - 2 Stiva's home, next spring/Levin's house in the country. Dolly, comforting Kitty, tries to persuade her that Vronsky is not worthy of her. She also asks about Kitty's feelings for Levin. Even the feeling of life reborn in the spring is not enough to comfort Levin. Stiva visits and gives him news of Kitty and of Vronsky's dangerous infatuation with Anna. 2.3 Karenin's country house. Anna reveals to Vronsky that she is to bear his child. He tries to persuade her to leave her husband, but she refuses because the Russian divorce laws would cause her to lose her son Seriosha. 3.1 A box at the races that afternoon. Vronsky suffers a severe accident. Karenin insists that the distraught Anna comport herself properly. She informs him that she cannot bear the sight of him and that she loves Vronsky. 3.2 Karenin's study some days later, night. Karenin cannot decide what to do. While hoping to preserve his marriage to Anna, who, he tries to persuade himself, is evil and corrupt, he must at all costs preserve his reputation. He writes to her insisting that she return to him and continue as before: He will not consider a divorce. 3.3 Anna, incensed, realizes that she must choose between her lover and her son. She tells Vronsky of her recurring death-dream, connected with the accident at the station. He is unable to comfort her, and she suspects him of selfishness when he again urges her to go away with him. She goes to Karenin and tells him she cannot continue as before, but begs him to let her have her son. Consumed with rage and disgust, he refuses.
ACT TWO
4.1 The Admiralty Gardens, St. Petersburg, early autumn. Levin cannot reconcile the problems and ironies of life and longs for death. Dolly insists that he come to meet Kitty at their house. Stiva learns with horror from Karenin of his impending divorce and begs him to talk to Dolly. Yashvin tries to persuade Vronsky to give up Anna for the sake of his career. He refuses. 4.2 A supper party at the Oblonskys'. Levin and Kitty meet for the first time since Betsy's ball and are both very moved. Karenin is angered by the general conversation concerning unfaithful wives and luckless husbands, and Dolly is unable to persuade him to forgive. Levin and Kitty declare their love for each other during a game of solitaire. "Not time to die yet!" exclaims a delighted Stiva. 4.3 Anna's bedroom that night. Karenin returns home to find Anna near death after a miscarriage. He is reconciled to Vronsky at her bedside and promises forgiveness. 5.1 Levin's house six months later. Although Levin is now happily married to Kitty, who is pregnant, he remains dissatisfied with what he regards as a useless and unproductive life, exemplified by news from Dolly that Anna, now recovered, has left Karenin for Vronsky and that Seriosha is being looked after by his aunt Lydia. 5.2 Letters. Anna writes to Karenin asking to be allowed to see Seriosha one last time, on his birthday. Lydia urges Karenin to forbid this. He does so, against his better judgment. 5.3 Seriosha's bedroom two days later. Anna forces her way into her son's bedroom. Since he had been told she was dead, he is overjoyed to see her. He does not realize that this is the last time he will see his mother, but he is distraught when Anna has to leave. 6.1 Anna's apartments at a hotel that evening. Anna, now addicted to opiates, is at the end of her tether: She doubts Vronsky's fidelity. Death is always on her mind: She is like a train hurtling to destruction. Dolly and Stiva are appalled at her condition when they bring Levin to meet her. Levin is much struck with this beautiful, sad woman and her situation. She asks him to tell Kitty not to forgive her, for to be able to do so, Kitty would have to suffer what Anna has herself suffered. When left alone with Vronsky, her jealousy leads to a schismatic quarrel. Vronsky leaves to visit his mother, and Anna is certain that he is in fact leaving her forever. She contemplates an overdose of morphia and then decides to follow Vronsky to the station to beg his forgiveness. 6.2 At the station. Everything passes like a dream. Anna has missed Vronsky and waits to follow him on the next train. She reviews her situation and the tortured life before her: She realizes, as if a light had suddenly illumined her soul, that death would release her from the pain and responsibility of life. When the train comes into the station, she throws herself beneath it. 6.3 Levin's country estate months later, in spring. In the aftermath of Anna's death, Levin cannot come to terms with the irony of life. Through the wisdom of his old nurse, he at last understands the reason for living: To live, love, and be loved; not to judge or envy others, nor to bewail their suffering; life is everything in itself. His blind eyes have been opened. -Colin Graham
Tracklist
 

CD 1
CARLSON, David b. 1952 
ACT ONE 
1. Prolog - The Station, Moscow. Winter, 1874.3:32 
Part 1. 
2. Scene 1: A sitting roon Stiva's house. That day.7:52 
3. Scene 2: A ball at Princess Betsy Tverskoya's house12:15 
4. Scene 3: Karenin's house, St. Petersburg. That night6:10 
Part 2. 
5. Scene 1: Stiva's house. A few days later.1:27 
6. Scene 2: Levin's house in the country.8:53 
7. Scene 3: Karenin's country house outside St. Petersburg. Spring.9:54 
Part 3. 
8. Scene 1: A box at the races. Tsarskoe Selo. That afternoon.10:49 
9. Scene 2: Karenin's study some days later. Night.11:15 

CD 2
ACT TWO 
Part 4. 
1. Scene 1: The Admiralty Gardens, St. Petersburg. Early autumn.7:31 
2. Scene 2: A supper party at the Oblonskys'.6:40 
3. Scene 3: Anna's bedroom that night.6:40 
4. Interlude1:06 
Part 5. 
5. Scene 1: Levin's house six months later.2:45 
6. Scene 2: Anna, writing.4:37 
7. Scene 3: Seriosha's bedroom. Early morning on his birthday.4:30 
8. Interlude0:45 
Part 6. 
9. Scene 1: Anna's apartments at a hotel. That evening.18:43 
10. Scene 2: the station Platform.7:14 
11. Scene 3: (Epilogue) The garden of Levin's country estate. Months later.6:47 

 

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