Explore treasures from the Archive which give us an insight into the fascinating lives of Benjamin Britten and Peter Pears.

List of News Articles

  1. Archive Treasures: Kathleen Ferrier’s musical friendships

    Last year our archive received a collection of memorabilia relating to contralto Kathleen Ferrier, including some fascinating items which illustrate…
  2. Archive Treasures: Britten and Australia - a ballet that might have been

    Scanning someone’s shelves is a quick way to find out their interests: their books and music provide a map of their mental world, and pulling something…
  3. Archive Treasures: Britten’s Viola

    Benjamin Britten—violist. Find out what our archives tell us about the composer’s beautiful 19th-century viola and the story of its…
  4. Archive Treasures: A year in pictures

    In our archive is a wonderful photograph album that Britten put together from 1935 to 1936, pasting in photographs and writing captions. It is…
  5. Archive Treasures: “Once-played-badminton-for-Suffolkship” – Stephen Potter at the Red House

    Books tell us about their readers: who can resist peering at someone’s bookshelves? Every book collection is a map of the owner’s interests – and for…
  6. Archive Treasures: William Plomer, Curlew River and a gift of Japanese prints

    A set of woodblock prints in Britten and Pears’ Library has a fascinating connection with the first Church Parable The opera…
  7. Archive Treasures: Baron Britten of Aldeburgh’s Letters patent

    Britten’s first prize was awarded to him at South Lodge School in 1927, aged 13, for badminton. He bought 4 miniature scores with the prize money:…
  8. Archive Treasures: Music, travel, tennis and 1930s emojis

    The correspondence in Benjamin Britten’s archive is extensive: over eleven thousand files, including both letters to Britten and those from him. The…
  9. Archive Treasures: Geoffrey Burgon, Britten, Brideshead, Blake and Pears

    What links the composer of the evocative TV theme for Brideshead Revisited to The Red House? The composer Geoffrey Burgon may be best known for…
  10. Archive Treasures: ‘the loveliest present that has ever happened’ – the gift of a concert to Imogen Holst

    In July 1942 Imogen Holst received a wonderful letter from a group of friends proposing to organise a concert of her works in London as a thank you…
  11. Archive Treasures: Thirty-seven love – Britten, Pears, sport and recreation at the Red House

    Romanticism dies hard: over two hundred years since the movement spread Sturm und Drang over Europe, it still informs our vision of what a…
  12. Archive Treasures: A Spiritual Home – Britten, Pears and The Red House

    The former homes of famous people are referred to, variously, as ‘house museums’ or ‘personality houses’. They are effectively physical ‘biographies’,…