Britten: Albert Herring

Nimbus: NI5824

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Britten: Albert Herring



Catalogue No:




Release date:

2nd June 2008




2 hours 13 minutes


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Britten: Albert Herring

The Royal Theatre, Copenhagen - September 15, 1949

Libretto by Eric Crozier and Directed by Basil Coleman

Peter Pears (Albert), Joan Cross (Lady Billows), Gladys Parr (Florence Pike), Margaret Ritchie (Miss Wordsworth), Otakar Kraus (Mr Gedge), Roy Ashton (Mr Upfold), Norman Lumsden (Spt. Budd), Denis Dowling (Sid), Nancy Evans (Nancy), Catherine Lawson (Mum), Anne Sharp (Emmie), Elisabeth Parry (Cis), Alan Thompson (Harry)

The English Opera Group Chamber Orchestra, Benjamin Britten

CD - 3 discs


Usually despatched in 4 - 5 working days.

This live recording is of a performance given by the English Opera Group, conducted by the composer in the Theatre Royal, Copenhagen on 15th September 1949. It is a fascinating document, coming, as it does, only two years after the first performance of the opera and with no less than eleven members of the original cast still in the team. The composer’s studio recording of Albert Herring was not made until 1964, and, excellent though it is, by then Peter Pears was the only role-creator still in the cast. All limitation of the sound quality aside, this is a wonderful survivor and one of the earliest recorded examples of Britten and the EOG in performance.

Benjamin Britten: Albert Herring

Act 1, Scene I, Opening, ...Florence

Act 1, Scene I, "Ah-Lady Billows!"

Act 1, Scene I, "Is this all you can bring?"

Act 1, Scene I, Interlude

Act 1, Scene II, "Hold tight!"

Act 1, Scene II, "Oh, maybe soon"

Act 2, Scene I, Opening

Act 2, Scene I, "Quick, here they are!"

Act 2, Scene I, Interlude

Act 2, Scene II, Opening

Act 2, Scene II, "Heaven helps those who help themselves"

Act 3, Opening

Act 3, "Hi! Hi! Heard the news?"

Act 3, "ALBERT...!"

BBC Music Magazine

September 2013


“Pears was not at his best, but in Britten's hands it is clear that, without losing any pathos, Albert Herring was first and foremost a superior piece of theatrical fun.”

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