Expand
  • Find us on Facebook
  • View Our YouTube Channel
  • Listen on Spotify
  • Follow us on Twitter
  • View our scores on nkoda
Music Text

various (E)

Scoring
see also Now Sleeps the Crimson Petal

Abbreviations (PDF)

Territory
This work is available from Boosey & Hawkes for the world.

World Premiere
15/10/1943
Wigmore Hall, London
Peter Pears, tenor / Dennis Brain, horn / orchestral ensemble / Walter Goehr
Repertoire Note

This masterly work was written for the combined musical talents of Peter Pears and Dennis Brain. Framed by a horn solo played on natural harmonics to evoke an atmosphere of far-off, primeval innocence, the Serenade is an extraordinary example of Britten’s ability to set an anthology of texts bound together by a similar theme, in this case, the world of night, sleep and dreams. The twilit atmosphere that characterizes this beautiful and evocative work is offset by the two settings that form its centrepiece, the ‘worm in the rose’ of Blake’s ‘Elegy’ and a nightmarish setting of the anonymous 15th-century ‘Lyke Wake Dirge’.


Stay updated on the latest composer news and publications