Edward Benjamin Britten an English composer, pianist, conductor; born, in Lowestoft, Suffolk, England; father - a dentist; the youngest of four children (a brother and two sisters) was educated locally; studied first piano and then viola from private teachers; began to compose in 1919; entered the Royal College of Music in London in 1930; won several prizes for his compositions;
Some facts about his life and career met tenor Peter Pears (1937); sailed for North America in 1939; operas: Peter Grimes (1945) Albert Herring (1947) A Midsummer Nights dream (1960) Billy Budd (1951) The Turn of the Screw(1954) Death in Venice (1973); the War Requiem (1961);
founded the English Opera Group in 1947; founded the Aldeburgh Festival in 1948; developed close friendship with D.Shostakovich and M. Rostropovich in the 1960s; awarded the Order of Merit in 1965; created a Life Peer in 1976; buried in the churchyard of the Aldeburgh Parish Church.
Peter Pears an English singer; began to develop his singing and acting talents during his school days at Lancing College; began his professional career with the BBC Singers in 1934; met the composer Benjamin Britten in 1937; shared three years in America (1939 – 1942) with B.Britten; developed his career as a soloist, making his operatic debut in The Tales of Hoffman; created the title role in Britten's Peter Grimes in 1945.
The Aldeburgh Festival It was founded in 1948 by B. Britten, P. Pears and E.Crozier. The original intention was to provide a home for their opera company, the English Opera Group. Soon literature, drama, lectures and art exhibitions were included.