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Draculette Opera In Two Acts  William Maselli

"Olga Zhuravel triumphs as Draculette
in the Greatest Recording of a contemporary opera in recent history."

"Draculette Presents 5 Brilliant new opera roles in a Single Hour of Musical and Dramatic Genius! "

"John Bellemer is stunning in the tenor role while Micaela Oeste is spectacular and Aaron Borst commanding with bravura performances as Diva and Maestro!"

"Brad Cresswell Soars like a young Domingo creating the role of Robert the Composer!"

"Relentlessly Bombastic!"
~ Opera News
But Not Dead on Arrival!!!!

Modern Opera for Our Time


Draculette is first and foremost a theater piece, and it is created to provide a great deal of dramatic potential for the singers/actors. It was originally conceived as an opera featuring Raskolnikov from Dostoyevsky. Then it was suggested that he should be a taxi driver in New York City, which merged into he being a woman. Then, in Salzburg in maybe 2003, I was delighted to hear the comment over drinks at the Triangel that the European nickname for Angela Gheorgihu was Draculette. Wow! What a name! She and Roberto Alagna were then starring in a concert production of Romeo And Juliet, which was the toughest ticket of that season. The offhand remark of someone returning for a failed attempt to secure a ticket outside the theater was, ”People would kill for a ticket!” And so was Draculette born!

The composer needed the fulfillment of some intense mental synthesis and personal experiences to write the libretto finally in 2005. Act One was written rather soon thereafter, and though Act Two was begun quickly it languished for some time. Most of Act Two was composed during the summers of 2008 and 2009 --- at the cost of being in Salzburg! When Angela Gheorghiu announced in the Italian press, Corriere Della Sera, that she would love to sing Draculette, if it was any good of course!, the project received some new inspiration which assisted in its completion, “at long last!” Most importantly Draculette was brought to life by the magnificent soprano Olga Zhuravel , who was not only fully committed to performing the role but whose untiring efforts were a major factor in bringing the composition to life. And so Draculette the composition has been born, and Draculette the independent living force begins its journey amidst the energies of this world.


Draculette, a young actress
Robert, composer
New York City, today, tonite, and tomorrow


New York City today
(Scene One. On a cold desolate street, almost an alley)

Ah! There is no point to this disgusting life!
My brain burns with the fire of Hell.
Idiots and morons I am forced to deal with
every disgusting minute of this disgusting life.
I sing and dance for God, for God alone.
I will take revenge on each of these pathetic beings ---
when in power I will strike without mercy.
Some I will destroy and the rest, ---
they will live in fear.
No drama!
Just Life.
‘Life and Life only.’
With despatch!
But my ‘thought dreams’ burn with a vivid power.
I am naked and strong and ready.
Desolate, alone, no money, nothing at all ---
cold and hungry in fact, if you want to know.
No one wants to know, except dear Robert.
Faithful friend, I will raise you from the dead,
you who alone are more miserable than I,
one half step every hour from jumping from the bridge ---
if not for him I would be dead and dust ---
now I live again!
But this life has been forced upon me,
and now I shall dare all!
If there will be no success,
if I must suffer endless torment,
I will strike while young and free ---
there is nothing I will not dare.
And it is right, as well, that I,
who lives upon the heights with the Great Souls of History,
am not bound by normal human laws ----
I make my own law ---
by right as well as by my pledge
when stolen from impending death by that fool Robert.
And there he is, day after day,
composing this absurd drama called Draculette ---
inspired by me, he says, ---
and every day he gets older and weaker,
exhausted by his failures and struggles for every penny.
Just to survive.
Well, he’s lived too long as it is ---
I owe him nothing, and so even he I now despise ---
I don’t want to, but it’s in my blood, its in my heart.
But he loves me, and I forgive him, but still . . . .
Though I forgive him that,
I can never forgive that he knows my soul.
But even he cannot suspect how far gone I am.
I will get drunk tonite with Robert,
and will consider tomorrow whether I have another day in me;
and to think on how it’s all to be done.
No man is going to taste me!
I can bear no more.
The heart that burns into my brain
is fired by volcanic power from the Sun, from Mars.
I am finished here,
unless the misery of this man’s life
once again uplifts me into survival.

Scene Two
(she enters into a basement apartment)

Oh, Robert, never fear, I am here to suffer with you.

I am on fire, my muse!
It’s like a dream!
Everything has come about just as I imagined!
The road to overwhelming success has just opened wide.

What nonsense. Are you drunk so early?

I am on fire, my muse!
Come, see, this is the letter from God!
Addressed to me, here, in this hovel,
as if I were what I indeed am,
a master destined for palaces and triumphs!
At long last!

Let me see!
Oh My God, Robert.
This is from the famous maestro,
lord of the opera,
your hero and idol.
Addressed to R. DeTroy,
composer of the opera Draculette,
resident of this hole in the earth.

My darling, what is wrong?
Even for you this is excessive spite and venom.
Come on, time to celebrate with me!

What, and get drunk,
the only way you know how to celebrate,
and then to listen to your moronic philosophizing,
and then to hear your voice like an animal in the gutter,
like a rat belching with poison.

‘And I stir the wounds until the blood flows
from the flesh in rhythmic orgasmic spasms!’

‘In the end she will rule,
For with nothing to lose
Her surrender to the void is no sacrifice,
There is nothing that she will not embrace,
and everything she will undertake,
with zeal,
with ferocity,
with abandon.’
O, the same throbbing notes repeating in my brain ---
I can not hear,
I can not see,
I can not think.

Come, my flower, sit beside me.
Even I am frightened by these words when sung by you,
sounded by your suffering spirit.
This is a day of joy.
We can emerge from the darkness together.

I needed you tonite.

I have time, and I will be back later, my darling.
The invitation’s for the opera at 8 ---
front row center I see ---
and then for private reception after,
‘when we can discuss the brilliance of your work
and our artistic future together.’
Maybe it will be a late night after all,
a wonderous evening,
a night I seemed never destined to taste!
Come on, I still have a few more hours.
I need to get a decent suit from the tailor,
He will lend me something.
I need to clean myself a bit, I suppose.
I am pressed for time, indeed.
Exult with me, little angel.
Tonite I hurtle over all the spiteful musicians
and bureaucrats who have rejected
and hated me.

Oh, my head is burning!

(taking the opera ticket from the envelope and
holding it high)
Oh Dream, oh Heaven!
Sitting right in front of the Maestro!
I could kill for this ticket!
To hear Romeo and Juliet
with the reigning King and Queen of the opera world,
and the Emperor in the pit!
And to be the guest of Honor!

Oh, my soul is in flames!

To personally expound upon my opera,
to bring to life the virgin poet Draculette
in all her glory and wonder ---
why, she and I shall arouse the world!

(she reads the letter again)
Save me God! ----
Tell me, you never met this man?

Oh, we met alright,
but he does not know me.
I met him as a slave,
as a fawning crawling creature.
But the great composer Robert DeTroy he does not know.

He writes to R. DeTroy! You could be man or woman!

I am the great composer R. DeTroy,
I could be man or woman or both,
for I am all the world in one soul!

You could be man or woman!

I am all the world in one soul!

Save me God!
You are man or woman!

All my ancestors are singing in my blood!
I am all the world in one soul,
and my fathers are urging me on to my destiny!

I will get the wine you have been saving!

My blood is on fire!
Wine, I wonder.

I will get the wine,
and this bread,
and this knife to cut it.

My blood is on fire,
burning with rivers of Destiny!
Wine is suspect at this moment,
but I have promised my Angel to celebrate ---
open it!
Cut the bread!
Like Christ and Magdalene we will triumph,
and share this supper of wine and bread before I leave.

No help from God!
This is the wine of my blood!
(pouring for both; each drink)
This is the bread of my body!
(cutting two pieces of bread,
handing one to Robert)
The Last Supper of Christ!

My ancestors call to me!
Destiny awaits.
Tonite I grasp Infinity.
No Fear!
Draculette: (she takes the knife and cuts his throat from
No fear!
No God!
No remorse!

The bread is stale!
O, what will become of my Draculette?
No fear . . . .no fear.

(he dies)

(Draculette seizes the blood-stained ticket, admires it
boldly, and exits)

End Act I


New York City, Tomorrow

Scene One: a palatial glamorous apartment
overlooking the city

I would never have guessed;
I imagined only a man could know a woman so well;
But imagine my delight in spying your beauty in the front row.
Right behind my head your burning energy seared me.

Though you are so well known,
I could still say that my delight was all the greater.

And mine greater still!

And mine greater still!

Such a lovely quartet,
Where maybe a duet would be appropos.

And which couplings would you have in mind, Maestro?

Could there be any question?


For Romeo here loves boys and girls with an eagle eye,
And Maestro, both men, I fear, love too much.

I am not amused.

I am most amused.
Come, only six empty bottles of champagne?
For such an occasion, the discovery of a new great opera,
We must drink at least two each before we move to the vodka.

And so a toast, Sanatate ! To the women who inspire real men!

(they drink)

And to the men who cherish real women!

(Maestro and Draculette become engaged in close

What is with you? I understand each of your little comments.
Are you implying something between myself and Maestro?

How silly, child.
Maestro is too much the man in his look;
But what a boy in his heart!
How can such a creature ever be satisfied?

It did not stop you from trying!

What impudence! You seek some scandal?

My friends, come. drink, and toast!
To the three greatest artists in the world today!
I stand here awed before your power!
(secretly to Maestro)
Truly I speak only to you

That’s twelve bottles! Now to the vodka.
And now for some music from the great opera Druculette!
Please, my darling, give us some moment.
Can you sing?

As a friend named Robert used to say,
A composer should sing as sweet as Father Wagner

Well said, mon Dieu!

What do you know about it?

“A love like this is born from God”

That is not the melody.

It is a new melody for a new love.

Come friends, give her some air;
Join in if there is a space

This is the scene where Draculette wonders
Where she lost her soul.

Ah, splendid!


OK, here. How’s the tempo, like this? Okay okay, oshi moshi.

There was a bird that flew over the hill
I had watched it for hours
And we had watched each other
I was only a child in torn clothes
And the little bird gave me something from its soul
And I gave it everything of my soul that was worth keeping

My grief was so strong that what I gave I could not keep
It could not stay with me
And I gave it to the bird
Thinking maybe I could take it back
But suddenly it lifted into the sky
And it flew high over the hill
And with it flew the beauty of my soul.

Diva and Tenor:
Oh my soul
O Beauty flown
O my soul
O darkness dwells in the spaces where you blossomed and died

And what a surprise for the child
Who gave away such a treasure!
For what was given in return

Draculette and Diva:
Was not human
Was not Light
But a colorless soundless primordial shadow
Where the child hid to survive in the world alone
(after some pause)

Well, drinking and tears
Are a fine Russian tradition!
Join me for a cigar, R. DeTroy.
This opera must be born.

It is a living spirit
And may not be silenced.

Well, we shall see.

Yes, we shall see.
(Maestro and Draculette drift off together to the balcony)

And what does the R. stand for, my beauty?

Why, ‘redeemed!’
And through you, Great Maestro,
The redeemer is redeemed.

That music took something from my soul.

I am very drunk
And feeling very strange.

Maybe you don’t know yourself.

And maybe I wish you had not fallen in love
With that German singer.

It was only to make you jealous.

Yes, it made me crazy, because you really were in love, and
when I needed you completely.

I swear on the lives I hold sacred.

And the Maestro?
Something was lost. Something was lost.

You are lost.

And that husband you had, and your little trip.
I carried a knife from the battlefields of France to kill him.

What bloody premonitions are these?
God, I am drunk beyond comprehension.
And we still drink!

What is this comment about boys?

I’ve seen you look at boys.

You’ve seen me look at boys!!

And I’ve had a dream.

And you’ve had a dream!
Pray tell!

It cannot be said.
(grabbing her)
You will say.

I was taken by the hand,
To watch you kiss a man.
An old man, who was once a boy.
An old man, your toy, and your joy!

(returning, hearing the end of conversation)
Why, this man hunts women with a vengeance!

What are you saying?

What are you saying?

I challenge you on that, my friend.

I think not, my friend.
Pravda --- mia dusha!
Now I want more music.
More Music, my muse!

I could sing all night!
(secretly to Tenor)
I wish to sing only for you.
I will sing, and dance as well!

Yes, Salome will dance for you, bello!
(aside to Tenor)
I see the looks you two are exchanging.

But she is not a boy.

Is she not?
She seems to me the most beautiful boy in all the world!
Oh, to place my lips upon your breast, dear girl!

(To Tenor)
Look, she’s my guest.
Stop flirting with her and attend to your own woman.

Do I have a woman?
Maybe I’d like to trade her for this new one.

(To Diva)
Oh, to place my kiss upon your lips.
You are a flower that collects the glistening dew!

(To Tenor)
I thought you traded her in last summer in Salzburg.

(To Maestro)
That affair was not serious. Are you crazy?

I heard that!

I said ‘you cannot be serious I would have an affair.”

I heard what you said.

I am surprised,
You are singing the scales of love.
And I don’t know whether it is Maestro,
Or this child,
Who is exciting you.
But excited you are.

From champagne and vodka, mon cher.
But you should know this red beauty
Wants nothing from you.
She is looking for a real man.
I knew you had this affair last summer,
And now my dreams are revealed.

(To Maestro)
I will kill you for that!

To arms, my friends!
I am lost in the melodies of the Infinite!
And it is okay to kill, darling Draculette, is it not?
I want to hear this scene from the opera,
And now that I’ve heard your voice
I want you to sing it.

I am only too pleased,
And as I said, I will dance as well.
Except I will not get naked
(secretly to Tenor)
Except with you, Darling
And I will kiss the lips
(secretly to Maestro)
Only of you, my love
Only from that statue,
Which I expect as tribute for my efforts
(secretly to Diva)
She is not as beautiful as you, my flower.
Maestro, to the piano.
And I want to feel the black soul of a Transylvanian night,
Where at four in the morning dogs feast on the spilled guts
Of a murdered prostitute.

I am shaking

I am on fire

To the piano then!
I will set this tone,
And if I fail,
Reject me then,
And take this man here.

I cannot seem to think.
Except to want to kill this man.

Blood is on my feet
And stains my soul
But from this I am free
I rise with lifting spirits
That scream away from this world
For I am my own law
And I am never so pure as when I choose to kill
And I am never so free as when I eat the souls of the dead
Like the gods I scour the fields of battle
And in this frenzied fight of life
I choose who will live and who will die
I climax as I eat your soul
And Nature tells me, there is nothing more
And so I kill
And so I live!
No man shall escape me!

(leaping into an embrace)
You shall not escape me!
(kissing her violently)

(rising from piano, grabs statue, and strikes Tenor in the
head, who falls dead)
You shall not have her!
(grabs her fiercely and begins kissing her)

Monster! My husband!
(she takes knife from table and thrusts it into the back,
through the heart, of Maestro)

Eta Lubov!
Pravda --- mia Dusha!
(He dies, holding the bloody statue)
(Draculette and Diva kneel over the fallen men, touch
their wounds, and put their bloody hands together)

Dracullette and Diva:
No law restrains the chosen ones
The force of destiny must prevail
The power of our Love
Sweeps away the jealous world

I am wet with blood and dew

And I will bloom to drink your soul

Draculette and Diva:
And we will love

And tomorrow we will die!

My Darling, all of this will be easily explained away.
And we will be free.

Yes, my Flower,
Tomorrow we will be free!

Draculette and Diva:
I hold your hand to the sky!
I hold your love to the gods!
We triumph in our love
We are the gods.


Piano/Vocal Score Act I
Piano/Vocal Score Act II
Orchestra/Vocal Score Scene 1
Orchestra/Vocal Score Scene 2
Orchestra/Vocal Score Act I