Campus News

Published by Communications and Public Affairs (519) 824-4120, Ext. 56982 or 53338

News Release

October 24, 2003

U of G holds Benjamin Britten festival events

The University of Guelph is hosting several lectures and concerts throughout November as part of a festival celebrating the life and work of 20th-century music icon/composer Benjamin Britten.

Benjamin Britten: A Celebration, runs Nov. 5 to 30 in Goderich, Guelph, Kitchener-Waterloo, London and Toronto, and will feature 17 performances of opera, oratorio and chamber music, eight lectures and numerous films with music by Britten.

The College of Arts is hosting three free public lectures at the Macdonald Stewart Art Centre:

Nov. 5, 7:30 p.m. Linda Hutcheon of the University of Toronto and Michael Hutcheon of Toronto Hospital will speak on "Dionysian Death and Apollonian Art: Benjamin Britten's Last Work, Death in Venice."

Nov. 18, 7 p.m. Author and University of Toronto professor emeritus Carl Morey will give a talk titled "Benjamin Britten: Icon of 20th Century Music."

Nov. 24, 8 p.m. Colin Graham, the artistic director of Opera Theatre of St. Louis who began his career by staging the premiere of Britten's Noye's Fludde and continued to work with Britten and presented a number of his operas will present a talk titled "Staging Britten's Operas."

The university is also holding four concerts:

Nov. 10, 8 p.m. "Britten Influences and Their Contemporaries" with Glyn Evans (tenor), Patricia Harton-McCord (mezzo-soprano) and Betty Maher (piano) will be presented at the Macdonald Stewart Art Centre. Tickets are $20 general, $15 for seniors and students.

Nov. 20, 8 p.m. The Adleburgh Connection performs The Heart of the Matter in War Memorial Hall. It's a 25-minute work that includes horns, songs, readings of Edith Sitwell's poems and Britten's Canticle III. Tickets are $25 and $5.

Nov. 27, 8 p.m. "Selected Chamber Music by Britten" will be presented in War Memorial Hall with Scott St. John (1st violin), Erika Raum (2nd violin), Steven Dann (viola), Shauna Rolston (cello) and Jamie Parker (piano). Tickets are $25 and $5.

Nov. 28, 8 p.m. The University of Guelph Choir performs works by Britten, Buxtehude and Saint-Saens at the River Run Centre. Tickets are are $16 and $8.

The artistic director of the festival is Nicholas Goldschmidt, founder of the Canadian Opera Company, former artistic director of the Guelph Spring Festival, first director of music at U of G and a 1984 recipient of a Guelph honorary degree. The general director is John Cripton, one of Canada's leading cultural brokers, impresarios and producers. Cripton earned an honours degree in drama at U of G in its first class of BA drama graduates.

For tickets or for more information, contact the River Run Centre at (519) 763-3000 or visit

For media questions, contact Communications and Public Affairs: Lori Bona Hunt (519) 824-4120, Ext. 53338, or Rachelle Cooper, (519) 824-4120, Ext. 56982.

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