Britten: The Young Person’s Guide To The Orchestra

Benjamin Britten takes you on an epic tour of the instruments of the orchestra, with some of the catchiest and most charming music ever composed. The work, subtitled Variations And Fugue On A Theme Of Henry Purcell, is based on a simple hornpipe from Abdelazer, a play for which Purcell composed incidental music in 1695. Britten uses this theme to show off the colours, ranges and characteristics of all the instruments of a modern symphonic orchestra. The piece is a great way to get to know the individual components of the orchestra and it’s also a fantastic listen.

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