BENJAMIN BRITTEN (1913-1976): Owen Wingrave, Op. 85.
Catalogue Number: 08K010
Description: Probably Britten's least regarded opera, this adaptation of a Henry James short story was commissioned for BBC television and completed and taped in 1970, with the only previous recording to this made as part of Britten's Decca self-conducted series shortly thereafter. The story has its supernatural elements although less integral to the plot than in The Turn of the Screw (but the story's ending is of a supernatural cause), and Britten uses twelve-tone material sparingly (as he was accustomed to late in his career) here but tellingly as well. Owen may be better as video than as audio but it doesn't deserve the lack of attention it has received these last 35 years. 2 CDs. Libretto included. Peter Coleman-Wright (baritone), James Gilchrist (tenor), Elizabeth Connell (soprano), Pamela Helen-Stephen (mezzo), City of London Sinfonia; Richard Hickox.