2013 marks the centenary of Benjamin Britten’s birth and major celebrations are planned across the world, making this the widest ever global celebration of a British composer.
The previously unpublished Six Early Songs were written during the composer’s schooldays, whilst he was studying with Frank Bridge. But even at this tender age, Britten already had such accomplished works as Quatre Chansons Francaises under his belt.
The songs on the one hand display Britten’s school-boyish imagination (witches, owls and moths), while on the other show a more brooding side, not to mention confident piano writing and an innate understanding of vocal drama. Previously unpublished, these six songs are an important new addition to the solo song repertory.