Aldeburgh: Celebrations revealed for Benjamin Britten’s centenary year

CELEBRATIONS to mark the centenary of one of the country’s greatest composers have been revealed today.

A bust of Benjamin Britten, who lived at the Red House in Aldeburgh, was unveiled at the Royal College of Music in central London, while the Royal Mint also said it plans to design a new fifty pence coin that will come into circulation next year.

It is part of a huge anniversary celebration of Britten’s life and work - including performances in 140 cities across the world.

All of his 14 major operas will be performed, including a performance of Peter Grimes on the beach at Aldeburgh.

Richard Jarman, director of the Britten-Pears Foundation, said: “The extraordinary scope of the plans underlines Britten’s truly global appeal and status as one of the most important cultural figures of the 20th Century. We are delighted that so many organisations around the world are celebrating.”

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The celebrations begin this month but will be focused on next year - the 100th anniversary of Britten’s birth.

Plans were also announced for the Friday Afternoons project which aims to encourage up to 75,000 children to sing, culminating in a performance on Friday, November 22 next year - which would have been the composer’s birthday.

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The BPF has also started building a large archive centre which will help preserve Britten’s work and ensure it is kept at The Red House.

There will also be dedicated weekends of music on BBC Radio3 and archive programmes shown on BBC4.

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