Now more than 100 years old, Hilaire Belloc’s Cautionary Tales have been put to opera. Read the full article here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2011/mar/11/cautionary-tales-review/print
Snip: ….There are many reasons why you might encourage children to go to the opera: enchantment, education, the beginnings of a lifelong interest in music. You wouldn’t necessarily expect them to receive a reprimand for going; but then Hilaire Belloc’s moralistic Cautionary Tales delivers a peculiarly fascinating form of telling off.
Published in 1907 and never out of print since, Belloc’s Cautionary Tales Designed for the Admonition of Children between the Ages of Eight and Fourteen Years, to give its full title, has inspired composers from Peter Warlock to Syd Barrett of Pink Floyd. Now Errollyn Wallen has crafted a selection of the stories into a dramatic cantata delivered by a stern quartet of Pink Floydish scary schoolmasters. These macabre, masked pedagogues prowl between rows of desks demanding silence in class: any shufflers or fidgeters are glowered at before the opera can begin….”