Suffolk: Global singalong launches Britten centenary weekend celebrations

Students from four Suffolk schools rehearse for the Friday Afternoons performance that will launch t

Students from four Suffolk schools rehearse for the Friday Afternoons performance that will launch the Benjamin Brittens Centenary at the Britten Studio in Snape Maltings on Friday, 22 November.

Thousands of people all over the world were today marking the centenary of Suffolk composer Benjamin Britten’s birth by taking part in a massive global singing celebration.

Organisers of the event are hoping that 100,000 people will take part in the event to mark the life of Britain’s leading composer of the 20th century.

Young and old are joining together for the Friday Afternoons project, with people being encouraged to sing the set of songs Britten composed under that title.

In Suffolk, there are a number of celebrations, with the biggest this afternoon when 800 schoolchildren will take part in an event at Snape Maltings Concert Hall.

Friday Afternoons is a set of 12 songs composed by Britten between 1933 and 1935.


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The simple songs, with witty piano accompaniments, are dedicated to Britten’s schoolmaster brother, Robert, and the boys of Clive House preparatory school, Prestatyn – a school in which choir practice and singing lessons regularly took place on a Friday afternoon.

Today’s events got off to a stunning start with a youth concert in Melbourne, Australia.

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During the day, people in many countries will be taking part, including America, Italy, Russia, Germany and Norway.

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