Benjamin Britten: Source Stories of Twelve Operas cover

Benjamin Britten: Source Stories of Twelve Operas

Various

1. Part 1 The Little Sweep. William Blake, The Chimney Sweeper in Songs Of Innocence and Songs Of Experience
2. Part 2 Noye's Fludde. Bible, Book of Genesis, Chapters 6-10
3. Part 3 The Burning Fiery Furnace. Bible, Book of Daniel, Chapters 1-3
4. Part 4 The Prodigal Son. Bible, Book of Luke, 15.11-32
5. Part 5 The Golden Vanity. Traditional English Ballad
6. Part 6 A Midsummer Night's Dream. Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night's Dream as told by Charles Lamb in Tales Of Shakespeare
7. Part 7 Peter Grimes. George Crabbe, The Borough, Letter 22 Peter Grimes
8. Part 8 Albert Herring. Guy de Maupassant short story, Madame Husson's Rosier
9. Part 9 Owen Wingrave. Henry James, Owen Wingrave, Section 1
10. Part 10 Owen Wingrave. Henry James, Owen Wingrave, Section 2
11. Part 11 Owen Wingrave. Henry James, Owen Wingrave, Section 3
12. Part 12 Owen Wingrave. Henry James, Owen Wingrave, Section 4
13. Part 13 The Rape of Lucretia. Shakespeare, The Rape of Lucrece, Section 1
14. Part 14 The Rape of Lucretia. Shakespeare, The Rape of Lucrece, Section 2
15. Part 15 The Rape of Lucretia. Shakespeare, The Rape of Lucrece, Section 3
16. Part 16 The Turn of the Screw. Henry James, The Turn Of The Screw, Beginning and Chapters 1-2
17. Part 17 The Turn of the Screw. Henry James, The Turn Of The Screw, Chapters 3-4
18. Part 18 The Turn of the Screw. Henry James, The Turn Of The Screw, Chapters 5-6
19. Part 19 The Turn of the Screw. Henry James, The Turn Of The Screw, Chapters 7-8
20. Part 20 The Turn of the Screw. Henry James, The Turn Of The Screw, Chapters 9-10
21. Part 21 The Turn of the Screw. Henry James, The Turn Of The Screw, Chapters 11-12
22. Part 22 The Turn of the Screw. Henry James, The Turn Of The Screw, Chapters 13-14
23. Part 23 The Turn of the Screw. Henry James, The Turn Of The Screw, Chapters 15-16
24. Part 24 The Turn of the Screw. Henry James, The Turn Of The Screw, Chapters 17-18
25. Part 25 The Turn of the Screw. Henry James, The Turn Of The Screw, Chapters 19-20
26. Part 26 The Turn of the Screw. Henry James, The Turn Of The Screw, Chapters 21-22
27. Part 27 The Turn of the Screw. Henry James, The Turn Of The Screw, Chapters 23-24
28. Part 28 Death In Venice. Thomas Mann, Death in Venice (Der Tod in Venedig), Chapter 1
29. Part 29 Death In Venice. Thomas Mann, Death in Venice (Der Tod in Venedig), Chapter 2
30. Part 30 Death In Venice. Thomas Mann, Death in Venice (Der Tod in Venedig), Chapter 3
31. Part 31 Death In Venice. Thomas Mann, Death in Venice (Der Tod in Venedig), Chapter 4
32. Part 32 Death In Venice. Thomas Mann, Death in Venice (Der Tod in Venedig), Chapter 5

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Genres

Summary

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.