Box of Delights: March 2020

Box of Delights: March 2020

Tuesday March 31 2020

The theme for our first Box of Delights of the year is ‘World Premieres’. It contains a selection of items that have been newly catalogued over the winter closed season and are making their first public appearances. The items are taken from two collections: the papers of Colin McPhee and the papers of Basil Coleman. […]

Catalogue Update: February 2020

Friday February 14 2020

Over the winter months, the archive team and volunteers have been busy creating new records for our catalogue, which are soon to be available to view online. Among the items that have been recently added to our catalogue are the papers of Colin McPhee. McPhee, an American composer, ethnomusicologist specialising in Balinese music, and friend […]

Conserving ‘Birds amongst foliage’

Monday February 10 2020

In March 2019 we were delighted to have been successful in our funding bid to the Association of Independent Museums Conservation Grant Scheme. The funding was to complete much needed repairs on Birds amongst foliage a unique, appliqued wall hanging by the artist Doris Schrecker, which was located in the drawing room of the House. […]

New Collection: Rita Thomson’s Letters

Wednesday December 11 2019

Last week we were delighted to receive for addition to our archive collections letters sent to Rita Thomson from many friends including Britten and Pears. Rita met Britten in 1973 when he had an operation at London’s National Heart Hospital where she worked as a senior ward sister. Amongst the letters deposited with us are […]

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Box of Delights: October 2019

Wednesday October 23 2019

For the last Box of Delights of 2019, and to contrast with the political turmoil around the world, we have selected items that highlight Britten’s interesting connections with the world of politics. Programme for the 8 December 1949 Britten and Pears were lifelong pacifists. At the outbreak of the Second World War, Britten and Pears […]

‘Storm & Stress’ of a different sort

Thursday October 17 2019

This month’s book display features the work of two men whose extraordinarily expressive art represented stories taken from Renaissance verse and Antiquity in contrasting but striking ways. Just right for the month that promises a weird Halloween. But for the intervention of time, the demands of other projects and the encroachment of ill health Britten […]

The Oriana, Salmon postcard series, early 1960s

Acquisition of the Month: September 2019

Wednesday October 16 2019

In spring 1960 Britten’s friend and chairman of the Orient Line, Sir Colin Anderson, asked the composer to write a ‘theme tune’ for his new passenger liner Oriana which had been built to serve the UK to Australia route. He intended the tune to be recorded and played when she left port or tied up […]

Poetry and Art of Landscape

Saturday October 5 2019

This month’s books show us two artists at work in the field of book illustration. Edward Lear is now probably best known to us as master of the Limerick and the inventor or a great deal of  nonsense rhyme (The Owl and the Pussycat, The Jumblies, The Pobble who has no Toes). He was a […]

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Box of Delights: September 2019

Monday September 30 2019

This month’s Box of Delights is themed around Britten and Pears’ school days given September marks the return of students heading back to school. School Photographs Our first items in the Box of Delights are Britten’s and Pears’ school photographs. The first image is of Britten at South Lodge School, in Lowestoft in 1924. Our […]

Britten, Evans, Crozier and Pears outside Crag House in Crabbe Street, Aldeburgh, late 1947

Acquisition of the Month: August 2019

Tuesday September 17 2019

In August the Archive was delighted to receive an addition to its collections 180 letters sent from producer and librettist Eric Crozier to his wife, mezzo-soprano Nancy Evans. From the early 1940s until the early 1950s, Crozier and Evans were central and influential figures in Britten and Pears’ lives. Crozier produced the first productions of […]