Benjamin Britten


Benjamin Britten (1913-1976) is considered one of the major English composers of the previous century. He was especially known for his operas and other compositions in which singing plays an important role. He wrote much of his music for his partner, the tenor Peter Pears. He founded the Aldeburgh Festival in 1948 together with Pears and producer and librettist Eric Crozier, which is still held under the name Aldeburgh Music. He was ennobled shortly before his death. Britten’s work was regularly performed at the Holland Festival, which featured the first complete performance of Britten’s War Requiem. The Rape of Lucretia was on the programme in 2011.

Major work 

1937 Variations on a theme of Frank Bridge 

1945 Peter Grimes (opera) 

1962 War Requiem 

1973 Death in Venice (opera)


1961 Hansischer Goethe-Preis 

1965 Order of Merit 

1974 Ernst von Siemens Musikpreis 

1976 Ennobled 

Honorary degrees from 19 conservatories and universities in Europa the United States