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The Sunday Opera: Benjamin Britten's "Turn of the Screw" from the Budapest Festival Orchestra

Only on the Sunday Opera can you go to Budapest for an English Opera right from your favorite chair, so join us this Sunday (8/20 3:00 p.m.) for Benjamin Britten’s “Turn of the Screw” in a performance by the Budapest Festival Orchestra.

Britten’s adaptation of Henry James’ psychological thriller has long been an audience favorite.

Into a dark and mysterious manor, Bly House, a very nervous Governess (Miah Persson) arrives to take care of two charges, Miles (Benjamin Fletcher) and Flora (Lucy Barlow). The Governess is welcomed by the only other person in the house, the housekeeper Mrs. Grouse (Laura Aikin), and she seems to believe that things won’t be too bad. That is, until Miles is sent home from boarding school for hurting one of his classmates..

Unbeknownst to her, however, there are two other entities that will soon shatter the quiet. The spirits of the former governess, Miss Jessel (Allison Cook), and valet, Peter Quint (Andrew Staples) return to claim the souls of Flora and Miles. The Governess fights valiantly, but it still ends tragically.

The story is told as a flashback after a prologue where an unknown stranger (Staples) stumbles into the deserted manor and reads a letter left by the Governess setting the stage for what will come.

Ivan Fischer conducts the Budapest Festival Orchestra.

We’re continuing with music of Britten after the opera with his 1962 War Requiem which combines the Mass for the Dead with poems by Wilfred Owen who lost his life in World War I. This recording features tenor Anthony Roden and bass-baritone Theo Adam, the Leipzig Rundfunkchor, Dresden Kapeliknaben, and the Dresden Philharmonic. Herbert Kegel conducts.

The afternoon will come to a close with Britten’s King Arthur Suite for Orchestra performed by the BBC Philharmonic conducted by Richard Hickox.

Michael is program host and host of the WWFM Sunday Opera, Sundays at 3 pm, and co-host of The Dress Circle, Sundays at 7 pm.
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