Benjamin Britten (1913-1976) was a British composer, pianist and conductor. He wrote works for opera and drama, as well as choral and orchestral works, songs, and music for documentaries and films.
As a fourteen-year-old, Britten took lessons in composition from the British composer Frank Bridge. Later, he was to write his famous Variations on a Theme by Frank Bridge as a musical portrait of his teacher. The eleven-part piece had its world premiere in 1937 at the Salzburger Festspiele, marking the composer’s breakthrough. Thanks to the success of subsequent compositions, such as Sinfonia da Requiem (1940), Serenade (1943) and the opera Peter Grimes (1945), Britten grew to become one of the leading figures in British classical music in the twentieth century.