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Peter Pears

Sir Peter Neville Luard Pears CBE (/ˈpɪərz/ PEERZ; 22 June 1910 – 3 April 1986) was an English tenor. His career was closely associated with the composer Benjamin Britten, his personal and professional partner for nearly forty years.

Pears's musical career started slowly. He was at first unsure whether to concentrate on playing or singing, and despite the efforts of some of his friends, it was not until he met Britten in 1937 that he threw himself wholeheartedly into singing. Once he and Britten were established as a partnership, the composer wrote many concert and operatic works with Pears's voice in mind, and the singer created roles in more than ten operas by his partner. In the concert hall, Pears and Britten were celebrated recitalists, known in particular for their performances of Lieder by Schubert and Schumann. Together they recorded most of the works written for Pears by Britten, as well as a wide range of music by other composers. Working with other musicians, Pears sang an extensive repertoire of music from four centuries, from the Tudor period to the most modern times.

 

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