Britten: A Midsummer Night's Dream (World Premiere) - Deller, Pears, Hemsley; Britten. London, 1960
Listen to a Sample:
This performance of A Midsummer Night's Dream came a day before the official world premiere. BBC wanted to make a recording, but their recording equipment couldn't be accommodated with an audience present. Benjamin Britten leads a dynamic and eclectic cast of great British singers including Alfred Deller (of Deller Consort fame) and his longtime collaborator and partner, Peter Pears. The cast and musicians demonstrates how quintessentially English this opera is from the opening children's chorus, to the use of a counter-tenor as Oberon (a practice dormant for hundreds of years) and the colloquial charm of the actors. The sound is very good.