The year is 1776. As our story begins, the English child
prodigy, Anna Storace is just eleven years old. She is taking singing lessons
from a former great opera singer, Rauzzini. Fast forward a few years and Anna
is quickly establishing herself as one of the great sopranos in Italy and
Vienna. Life for her becomes a bit complex. She is a mere teenager when she is
forced into an abusive marriage. When Anna and Mozart meet, they are both
strongly attracted to each other. The two maintain a musical connection
throughout their lives. Anna’s life as an opera singer seems to be so much more
exciting and varied than the life of any other woman of that time period could
be. This is a love story that encourages interest in opera, Mozart, and
in the music.
"Shotwell lyrically navigates her protagonist through love affairs, heartache and dazzling high-stakes performances. This is an exquisite read for history fans, classical-music lovers and romance aficionados alike." --Chatelaine
Vienna Nocturne recounts the turbulent life and brilliantly successful career of young British opera singer Anna Storace, a child prodigy who is taken by her parents to Italy at age thirteen to advance her career. In love with life and wildly ambitious, Anna wants everything--to be famous, to be loved--and this leads her to make some fatal choices. We watch her turn from a carefree young girl to a passionate young woman, and it is during this transformation that her affair with Mozart blossoms. The story of their love, no less powerful for being forbidden, is reminiscent of the passionate thwarted romances described in Loving Frank and Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet. Written in melodious prose by a young author studying opera at Yale, Vienna Nocturne is dramatic story of a woman's battle to find love and fame in an 18th-century world that controls and limits her at every turn.
About the Author
VIVIEN SHOTWELL received her Artist Diploma in opera from the Yale School of Music, and was awarded the Phyllis Curtin Career Entry Prize. She studied music and English at Williams College, in Massachusetts, and received an M.F.A. in fiction from the Iowa Writers' Workshop, where she was an Iowa Arts Fellow. She currently writes and sings in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Vienna Nocturne will be translated into ten languages
• "You don't have to be an opera buff to fall deep into Vienna Nocturne. Vivien Shotwell catapults you straight into the 18th century with abundant, vivid detail. I found Anna Storace's journey from prodigy to prima donna an irresistible tale." --Nancy Horan, author of Loving Frank and Under the Wide and Starry Sky