The 2017 Aldeburgh Festival celebrates the 50th anniversary of music at Snape Maltings which was completed in time for the 1967 Festival. This year, as 50 years ago, the Festival presents Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and features four Askonas Holt artists. Iestyn Davies, a much admired Oberon, is partnered by Sophie Bevan singing Tytania for the first time. Eleanor Dennis makes her role debut as Helena (a role she also sings at ENO next season) and Matthew Rose’s well seasoned Bottom leads the troupe of hapless Mechanicals. Matthew recently spoke to The Times about his experience with the role over the years. There are four performances taking place on 09, 11, 12 and 14 June.
The production will be recorded for broadcast on BBC Radio 3 on Saturday 24 June.
Later in the Festival, a second Britten opera is featured, with Opera North’s concert stagings of Billy Budd, a work never previously performed in Snape Maltings. Alan Oke heads the cast as the tortured and vacillating Edward Fairfax Vere, with Brindley Sherratt making his festival debut as John Claggart. Oliver Johnston will also make his festival debut as the Novice. There are two performances only, on 24 and 25 June.
Photo credit: Alan Stanton (CC BY-SA 2.0)