January 09, 2013

Benjamin Britten Centenary

We are delighted to present a collection of Benjamin Britten releases put together to mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of the great English composer (22 November 1913 — 4 December 1976).

With ten albums dedicated to Britten scheduled for release in 2013, EMI Classics delve into their vast back-catalogues of music as well as presenting three brand new recordings put together especially for this important anniversary.

Forthcoming releases include The Rape of Lucretia, starring Angelika Kirchschlager, Peter Coleman-Wright and Ian Bostridge, conducted by Oliver Knussen. Recorded live in 2011 at the Aldeburgh Festival, which Benjamin Britten himself founded in 1948, this performance of the composer’s dark and intense chamber opera was a dazzling success.

EMI Classics present an album of Britten Songs, performed by tenor Ian Bostridge and accompanied by Antonio Pappano. The recording features songs including Winter Words, Michelangelo sonnets, Hölderlin Fragments and Songs from the Chinese, where the role of accompanist is taken by guitarist Xuefei Yang.

Pappano again pays tribute to Britten with a brand new recording of his famous War Requiem. Widely considered to be the composer’s crowning choral work, the piece was commissioned to mark the consecration of the new cathedral at Coventry after the Second World War. This new recording features a stellar line up of soloists, including Anna Netrebko and Ian Bostridge, alongside the Orchestra and Chorus of the Academy of Santa Cecilia. Pappano and the Orchestra of Santa Cecilia will perform the work at the 2013 Salzburg Festival.