Although Britten is one of the featured composers at the BBC Proms this year, the festival’s controller Roger Wright has been careful not to over-inflate his presence throughout the festival.
The Cadogan Hall is one of the focus points for Britten’s music, with some nicely planned Saturday matinees and an important premiere still to come. Meanwhile Britten got a Monday chamber concert all to himself this week, with pianist Imogen Cooper, tenor James Gilchrist, soprano Ruby King and guitarist Christoph Denoth taking up the opportunity to give an inviting combination of vocal works both well and lesser-known.
We therefore had a chance to enjoy the Songs from the Chinese and the brief collection of five songs A Charm of Lullabies, together with the more substantial first two Canticles, Canticle I: My Beloved Is Mine and Canticle II: Abraham and Isaac. The concert also offered the rare opportunity to see Imogen Cooper playing the composer’s piano music.