Children's voices, Piano
Friday Afternoons was composed for the schoolboys at Clive House, Prestatyn, the prep-school where Britten's elder brother Robert was headmaster. The children regularly had music lessons on a Friday afternoon, hence the title, and the songs were composed over a (for Britten) long period between 1933 and 1935. They are charming and relatively simple settings, suitable for children's voices, but with characteristically quirky piano parts. Since 2013, Snape Maltings has run a very successful education project based on Britten's original songs along with a whole new repertoire of specially-commissioned new songs for children.
Audio extracts courtesy of Decca Classics. Choir of Downside School, Purley; Viola Tunnard (piano) (1967).
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