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Last Gasp of Boyhood

RODERIC DUNNETT investigates
Jubilee Opera's 'A Time There Was'
for the Benjamin Britten centenary

 

For a quarter of a century Jubilee Opera has been lifting the standards of children's opera in Britain to standards that match anything in Europe.

It hoisted its flag to the mast with Britten -- The Little Sweep was its first production twenty-five years ago in 1988 -- and perhaps not surprisingly, given that it performs in the very building where Britten's operas began -- the Jubilee Hall, opened in 1887, where Albert Herring and later A Midsummer Night's Dream and indeed The Little Sweep had their world premieres.

But Britten's children's operas, vaudevilles, oratorios (Noyes Fludde, The Golden Vanity or St Nicolas) square with the company's aspirations, so he, though not he alone, plays a big part in their undertakings. It is appropriate and exciting that the company's often scintillating present artistic director, Frederic Wake-Walker, with one of Britten's closest and most inspiring allies and amanuenses, the conductor Steuart Bedford, have opted this year to look at Britten anew...

Copyright © 1 December 2013 Roderic Dunnett,
Coventry UK

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JUBILEE OPERA

BENJAMIN BRITTEN

FREDERIC WAKE-WALKER

STEUART BEDFORD

SUFFOLK

UNITED KINGDOM

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