Letters from a Life: The Selected Letters of Benjamin Britten, 1913-1976. 1952-1957

Front Cover
Boydell Press, 2008 - Biography & Autobiography - 633 pages
0 Reviews
One of the most illuminating biographical projects in recent years. PETER ACKROYD The fourth volume of the annotated selected letters of Benjamin Britten covers the years 1952-57, during which he wrote three major works for the stage - the Coronation opera Gloriana, the chamber opera The Turn of the Screw, and the full-length ballet The Prince of the Pagodas - as well as important vocal works such as Canticles II and III and the Hardy song-cycle Winter Words. Correspondents include librettists William Plomer (Gloriana) and Myfanwy Piper (The Turn of the Screw), and friends and collaborators such as Edith Sitwell, E. M. Forster, Basil Coleman, Imogen Holst, Francis Poulenc, Lennox Berkeley, the Earl of Harewood and Britten's partner and principal interpreter, Peter Pears. The volume charts Britten's growing stature as a major figure of the European musical establishment as composer, conductor and pianist, and his continuing involvement with the Aldeburgh Festival, the English Opera Group, and Covent Garden. Central to the period is the world trip undertaken by Britten and Pears and the first-hand encounter with the music and cultures of Bali and Japan that were radically to inform Britten's compositional techniques from Pagodas onwards.The comprehensive and scholarly annotations vividly evoke a key period in twentieth-century musical and cultural history, and offer a wide range of detailed information fascinating for both the Britten specialist and the general reader. Published in association with The Britten-Pears Foundation.

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

About the author (2008)

A trusted automotive resource since 1966, Santa Monica, California-based EDMUNDS.COM is now the Internet's pioneer and leader in providing free third-party automotive information, tools and services for consumers. PHILIP REED is a consumer advice editor at Edmunds.com and appears frequently on radio and television programs as an automotive expert.

Mervyn Cooke is Professor of Music at the University of Nottingham. He is the author of Jazz, The Chronicle of Jazz, and Britten and the Far East; co-author of Benjamin Britten: Billy Budd; editor of The Cambridge Companion to Benjamin Britten (1999) and The Cambridge Companion to Twentieth-Century Opera (forthcoming) and is currently writing a history of film music for Cambridge University Press. He is also a composer and pianist.

Donald Mitchell is chairman of the publishing house of Faber Music, Ltd. His books include "Benjamin Britten" (edited with Hans Keller); "The Mozart Companion" (edited with H.C. Robbins Landon); "The Language of Modern Music"; an annotated and revised edition of Alma Mahler's "Memories and Letters"; and "Benjamin Britten, Pictures from a Life, 1913-1976" (with John Evans).

Bibliographic information