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Benjamin Britten: Source Stories of Twelve Operas

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Benjamin Britten: Source Stories of Twelve Operas provides a fascinating insight into the inspiration behind some of the renowned composer's most beloved operas. The collection includes detailed summaries of the original stories that Britten adapted into operatic masterpieces, allowing readers to appreciate the depth and complexity of his artistic vision.

The book offers a comprehensive exploration of Britten's creative process, highlighting the diverse range of sources that influenced his work. From classic plays and novels to lesser-known folk tales and poems, each source story is meticulously analyzed to demonstrate how Britten skillfully transformed them into compelling operatic narratives.

In addition to the insightful commentary on the source material, the book also features biographical information about Britten, providing context for his artistic development and the historical background of each opera. This combination of critical analysis and historical context makes the book a valuable resource for opera enthusiasts, scholars, and anyone interested in the creative process behind the creation of a masterpiece.

Overall, Benjamin Britten: Source Stories of Twelve Operas is a must-read for anyone who wants to deepen their understanding and appreciation of Benjamin Britten's operatic works. It is a well-researched and engaging exploration of the creative mind of one of the most innovative composers of the 20th century.

Book Description:
Britten's operas are firmly established in the international repertoire: according to Operabase, they are performed worldwide more than those of any other composer born in the 20th century, and only Puccini and Richard Strauss come ahead of him if the list is extended to all operas composed after 1900. Britten went to various sources for his stories from the Bible to Japanese noh plays. This is a collection of twelve of the source stories. All but one are the original texts; the one exception is A Midsummer Night’s Dream which the reader took from Charles Lamb’s telling of the story. Some operas are omitted because no public domain texts could be found for their sources.

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