MANUSCRIT MUSICAL autograph, fragment of The Fall of the House of Usher; 1 oblong page in-fol. (20 x 29 cm; pale ink).
Rare fragment of this unfinished opera.
It is known that Debussy worked for a long time, from 1909 until his death, on this opera project of La Chute de la Maison Usher, for which he himself wrote the libretto after Edgar POE, and which remained unfinished; only about thirty pages are known.
This leaflet, with the title carried at the head by Emma Debussy, is written in ink, with a few additions in black pencil; it comprises 16 measures for voice, with accompaniment noted on 2 or 3 staves. Debussy noted a "B" in blue pencil in the upper right-hand corner.
This fragment of the second scene corresponds to bars 318 to 333 of the edition of the Complete Works (Series VI, volume 3, 2006, pp. 64-66).
This is the end of Roderick's monologue in scene 2, before the doctor's reply; Debussy has noted only part of the words below the vocal line (we restore the rest in square brackets): "They are coming. They are coming over me [Black wings!...] I can't see... [I'm afraid] I'm afraid" (bars 318 to 328); plus the sketch, without the words, of the doctor's reply (bars 329 to 333). At the beginning of bar 329, Debussy has written "Harp" in the accompaniment.
At the bottom of the page, dedication by Emma Claude Debussy: "to the violist Alice Merckel EmClaude Debussy". [Alice MERCKEL (1899-1973) was a remarkable violist; she founded in 1918, with her brother Henri, the Quatuor Merckel].
On the back, autograph sketch of 3 measures in graphite.