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Britten: Peter Grimes CD

4.3 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

Price: £4.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details
Includes FREE MP3 version of this album.
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Product details

  • Performer: Sir Peter Pears, Claire Watson, Owen Brannigan
  • Orchestra: Royal Opera House Orchestra and Chorus
  • Conductor: Benjamin Britten
  • Composer: Benjamin Britten
  • Audio CD (9 April 2001)
  • SPARS Code: ADD
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Decca (UMO)
  • ASIN: B000059ZIE
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 28,359 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Product Description

BRITTEN BENJAMIN

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
There have been many productions of Grimes around the world and a good few recordings made since this first one was committed to disc nearly half a century ago. From our perspective in the 21st Century it is hard to recall the huge impact made by the first production at Sadlers' Wells in 1946 and by this recording just a decade or so later. It's now easier to see the antecedents and ancestors of the piece - Verdi, Mahler, even Mozart. At the time it seemed a really revolutionary piece, not only for British but also for worldwide opera.

The recording, too, was something new. This was the first time that John Culshaw and his Decca team had fully implemented their ideas for making a real production out of a stereo opera recording. The original booklet proudly showed the grid laid out on the floor that allowed singers to move about the imaginary set as they would in a real theatrical production. And the recorded sound was absolutely state-of-the-art for its time, then still in the early days of stereo. These digital transfers still shine almost as brightly as any of the more modern recordings.

The performance itself has rightly become a classic. The composer conducting his own work, of course, has a special authenticity. And more. Britten, unlike many conducting composers, was a highly professional, totally convincing and usually revelatory conductor - of other composers' works as well as his own. So it is here. Working with an opera house chorus and orchestra (Covent Garden), there is still something of the `shock of the new' about this performance. The drama of the interludes - particularly the Passacaglia and the one before the final scene which is not included in the concert set - has enormous impact and, in these two cases, is probably more moving than any.
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Format: Audio CD
Interesting reviews here already but I cannot understand why I don't see the words 'Masterpiece' and 'WOW'!
Only a handful of times in my life have I been so blown away by a piece of art (whether music, literature or visual). Can't stop listening to it.
I write from the impoverished, though maybe in a way advantageous, position of this being the first piece of Britten I have taken the trouble to listen too.
Once it became apparent how much I enjoy this piece (and it did take a few listenings before the penny dropped) I was tempted to immediately purchase one or more of the other well regarded performances but on reflection I intend to firstly just luxuriate in this particular performance, to allow it to seep into my bones. Only then will I explore other versions and other Britten pieces.
I don't expect any of them will effect me in the way this disc has but I am hopeful of great treats in store.
Of course taste is an individual thing but for what its worth my opinion is that this disc is a damn near perfect piece of music.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I've known this recording for the past 50 years on (auto-change format!) vinyl, and it's thrilling and moving to hear it hear so lovingly restored for the digital age. Much more than a historic document or a period piece, the drama and beauty of Britten's score come over the speakers with astonishing vividness and truth. The actual sound is still astonishing. I also have the challengingly different Jon Vickers/Colin Davis recording - still essential listening and equally brilliantly realised for CD, but there is something uniquely special about this first recording which all lovers of Briiten's music (of whatever age) must remain profoundly grateful for.
Thanks again to Amazon for super-efficient service at an unbeatable price.
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Format: Audio CD
This is the composer's own realisation of the work, and as such is closest to the PETER GRIMES of his mindscape. He fine-tuned his score for the voice of Peter Pears, who was both his muse and lover. The role has been better sung since. It has to be admitted that Pears has a somewhat reedy voice. However, a combination of Claire Watson in superb form, an unsurpassed Royal Opera House, Covent Garden cast and orchestra, the gloriously intimate sound of 1950s Decca recording (when all audio transcriptions were of Rolls Royce quality, or they didn't reach the vinyl), and the fact that when you are hearing this version, you are witnessing a love poem from Britten to Pears, makes it the one to covet.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
What can I say? I am not a music expert. I heard an excerpt and decided to buy the opera. Even I could sense the brilliance but felt it was too intrusive - too ego ridden. Moments of heart-stopping poignancy.
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Format: Audio CD
This recording of Peter Grimes, with the part of Peter sung by Peter Pears, is still the finest rendition of this wonderful opera.
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