Britten’s creative inspiration came from where he lived and worked. How did composing while walking in this particular Suffolk landscape shape the music he was writing?

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The ever changing nature of the sea, the way light reflects on water giving seemingly endless different colour combinations, constant movement in the reedbeds combined with the rhythm of walking and birdsong give rise to a musical perception of landscape.

Still from Britten, Reflections on Composition, by Emily Richardson

Britten, Reflections on Composition is a new film by Emily Richardson made with materials from the Britten Pears Archive, featuring the voice of Zeb Soanes as Britten, that considers this artistic process and the profound influences of Britten’s local surroundings on his work.

This magic comes only with the sounding of the music

Benjamin Britten

Britten, Reflections on Composition
4.13 minutes
Directed and Filmed by Emily Richardson, 2023
Benjamin Britten voiced by Zeb Soanes reading extracts from Britten on Music, Edited by Paul Kildea, Oxford University Press, 2003

You can also watch the film at the Archive, at The Red House, Aldeburgh.