Award-winning actor Samuel West joins the Aurora Orchestra and FCMG’s Senior Choir for a rare performance of Britten’s complete surviving film scores, alongside the original documentary films for which they were composed.
Sunday 29 September, Queen Elizabeth Hall London, 3.15pm
Thursday 7 November, Turner Sims Southampton, 8pm
Sunday 10 November, Fairfield Halls Croydon, 7.30pm
With subjects ranging from postage stamps to pacifism, the abolition of the slave trade to the electrification of the London–Portsmouth railway, the documentary films created by the GPO film unit in the 1930s are wonderfully made and fascinating historical documents. Benjamin Britten’s music brilliantly reflects, amplifies and underpins the screen images, whilst scripts from writers including WH Auden are infused with great invention and humour. A celebration of composer’s craft and film-maker’s technique, and a remarkably vivid insight into pre-war Britain.
The Way To The Sea
Men Behind The Meters
The King’s Stamp
Peace of Britain
Samuel West (narrator)
Nicholas Collon (conductor)
Finchley Children’s Music Group
These performances of the Britten GPO Films, first presented at the 2012 Aldeburgh Festival, are supported by funds from the Arts Council England Britten Centenary Fund.
The Turner Sims concert is presented in association with Orchestras Live.