6' - 13'


Edition Peters

Instrumentation Notes

Fl., B-cl., Tpt. – Pn. – 2Vln., Va., Vc.

Program Notes

[The revised Peters Edition score of 2007 replaces all previous editions. Several errors in the previous score have been corrected in this edition.]

NOVARA was composed, at the request of Lukas Foss, for a Fromm concert at the Tanglewood Festival in the summer of 1962 and the first performance was conducted there by the composer. The work was written just after the composing and Venice premiere of AVAILABLE FORMS II (for 98 instruments and two conductors), and is a kind of “relaxing” into the intimacy and delicacy of chamber music and soloistic possibilities after the very large resources and massed orchestral sounds of that work. NOVARA is an “open-form” work and uses many of the less characteristic sounds of the instruments that are sometimes referred to as “noises” but are nevertheless instrumental sounds which can extend the formal and expressive potential of the work. “Open-form” means that all of the sound materials in the work are notated and controlled in the score but that their sequence, juxtaposition, tempi, and repetition are left to the spontaneous (during the performance) decisions of the conductor as the performing process develops and unfolds between himself, the sound materials and the musicians. The form of the work is therefore unique in each performance but it is always NOVARA because only those composed sound events may be used.
—Earle Brown

More Information

“Open form” composition.

Audio Samples


Selected Performances

March 18, 2016 • Dallas Museum of Art

Ensemble Sounds Modern
Conductor: Joseph Klein

January 19, 2016 • Good Shepherd Center, Seattle, WA

Inverted Space Ensemble 

March 9, 2008 • BBC R3 Cardiff

Ensemble: Contemporary Music Ensemble of WalesConductor: Gordon Downie

October 15, 1990 • Vienna

Ensemble: Klangforum

October 31, 1988 • Boston, New England Conservatory

November 26, 1985 • Freiburg, Germany, Institut fuer Neue Musik

November 18, 1983 • Strasbourg, France

March 20, 1975 • University of York

March 8, 1974 • Rotterdam

Ensemble: Rotterdam Philharmonic

January 14, 1969 • Peabody Conservatory of Music

Ensemble: The Peabody Contemporary EnsembleConductor: Earle Brown

November 30, 1961 • Tanglewood Festival

Conductor: Earle Brownfirst performance

Sample Page

Novara sample page


General instructions for conducting “open form”


Selected works 1952-1965 (released 2006-08-01)

New World Records

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New World Records

American Masters Series: Earle Brown (released 2000)

CRI (note: this has been reissued as "Selected Works 1952-1965" by New World Records)

Performed by Various

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Earle Brown Music Foundation