A photographic journey, including a selection of previously unpublished images, that reveal the man 'behind the scenes' at work and play. A new and often surprising portrait of this major musical genius.
In this original and engaging work, author Kent Puckett looks at how British filmmakers imagined, saw, and sought to represent its war during wartime through film. The Second World War posed unique representational challenges to Britain’s filmmakers. Because of its logistical enormity, the unprecedented scope of its destruction, its conceptual status as total, and the way it affected everyday life through aerial bombing, blackouts, rationing, and the demands of total mobilization, World War II created new, critical opportunities for cinematic representation. Beginning with a close and critical analysis of Britain’s cultural scene, War Pictures examines where the historiography of war, the philosophy of violence, and aesthetics come together. Focusing on three films made in Britain during the second half of the Second World War—Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (1943), Lawrence Olivier’s Henry V (1944), and David Lean’s Brief Encounter (1945)—Puckett treats these movies as objects of considerable historical interest but also as works that exploit the full resources of cinematic technique to engage with the idea, experience, and political complexity of war. By examining how cinema functioned as propaganda, criticism, and a form of self-analysis, War Pictures reveals how British filmmakers, writers, critics, and politicians understood the nature and consequence of total war as it related to ideas about freedom and security, national character, and the daunting persistence of human violence. While Powell and Pressburger, Olivier, and Lean developed deeply self-conscious wartime films, their specific and strategic use of cinematic eccentricity was an aesthetic response to broader contradictions that characterized the homefront in Britain between 1939 and 1945. This stylistic eccentricity shaped British thinking about war, violence, and commitment as well as both an answer to and an expression of a more general violence. Although War Pictures focuses on a particularly intense moment in time, Puckett uses that particularity to make a larger argument about the pressure that war puts on aesthetic representation, past and present. Through cinema, Britain grappled with the paradoxical notion that, in order to preserve its character, it had not only to fight and to win but also to abandon exactly those old decencies, those “sporting-club rules,” that it sought also to protect.
These critical essays on art and artists by T.G. Rosenthal, chosen by the author from his considerable output over more than fifty years of writing and reviewing, focus mainly on what has come to be known as ‘Modern British’ art - art from the 20th century. Rosenthal knew many of his subjects personally and some became friends: Michael Ayrton; Arthur Boyd; Ivon Hitchens; Thelma Hulbert; L. S. Lowry; Sidney Nolan; Paula Rego. There are also essays on Wyndham Lewis, Jack B. Yeats and the paintings of August Strindberg. There is a profile of Walter and Eva Neurath, founders of the art-book publishers Thames & Hudson, the author’s first employers; an essay on Anti-Semitism in England; and an obituary of Matthew Hodgart, who at Cambridge, influenced and developed Rosenthal’s knowledge and passion for literature.
Best remembered for his operas and his War Requiem, Benjamin Britten's radical politics and his sexuality have also ensured that he remains a controversial public figure. Journeying Boy is a selection of his diaries that offer the reader an unseen insight into this complex man. Encompassing the years 1928-1938, they explore some key periods of Britten's life - his early compositions, his education first under composer Frank Bridge and then at the Royal College of Music, an unhappy but productive period studying under John Ireland and Ralph Vaughan Williams, and his reluctant and often painful process of parting from the warm, safe environment of his family home and his beloved mother. The diaries cast light on an often misrepresented musician whose technique, originality and musical prowess have entranced audiences for generations and who continues to inspire composers and musicians around the world.
Part of a series providing comprehensive coverage of the life and works of great composers, this revised edition focuses on Benjamin Britten and includes his posthumously published works and new biographical material. All the reference sections have been updated, including the discography of Britten's performances of his own works. It is suitable for musicians, students and the general reader alike.