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Britten Chamber Festival
Sunday, March 29, 2020 at 3:00PM

Emmanuel Church in the City of Boston
15 Newbury Street
Boston, MA 02116
Accessible by public transportation - Green Line Arlington Stop


The evening series at Emmanuel Church continues with the second part of the two-year Britten Chamber Music Festival, celebrating the musical mastery and invention of England’s foremost 20th century composer. The centerpiece of the festival will be the “Canticles.” Written between 1947 and 1974, almost perfectly book-ending Britten’s post-war career, the “Canticles” are a quintet of chamber works for a range of instrumentation. Their one constant is a solo part for tenor – each was written for Britten’s partner and muse, Peter Pears. Also of note in the festival are the intricate “Phantasy Quartet” for oboe and string trio, written in 1932, as well as the touching “Songs from the Chinese,” written in 1957 and, unique to Britten’s output, scored for tenor and guitar, inspired by his friendship with guitarist Julian Bream. “The festival works use some very interesting instrumentation, a variety we don’t always see at Emmanuel,” says Turner. “Britten was always writing with specific voices and personalities in his mind and certain sounds in his ear.”