[Daily article] July 14: Noye’s Fludde

Noye’s Fludde is a one-act opera written largely for young amateur
performers, created by the British composer Benjamin Britten. First
performed in 1958 at the annual Aldeburgh Festival, it is based on the
15th-century Chester “mystery” play which recounts the biblical story of
Noah, the flood and the ark. Britten had written numerous works for
mixed professionals and amateurs, and had also used text from the
Chester play cycle, for his 1952 Canticle II. For Noye’s Fludde he added
to the Chester text three congregational hymns, together with the Greek
prayer Kyrie eleison and an Alleluia chorus. Of the solo sung roles,
only the parts of Noye (Noah) and his wife are intended to be sung by
professionals; the remaining roles are taken by child and adolescent
performers. The mainly amateur orchestra contains numerous
unconventional instruments. At its premiere Noye’s Fludde was acclaimed
by critics and the public alike, both for the inspiration of the music
and for the design and production. Since then it has been staged
worldwide; the performance in Beijing in October 2012 was the first in
China of any Britten opera.

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Today’s selected anniversaries:

1789:

French Revolution: Parisians stormed the Bastille, freeing its
inmates and taking the prison’s large quantities of arms and ammunition.

1950:

In an early battle of the Korean War, North Korean troops began
attacking the headquarters of the American 24th Infantry Division in
Taejon, South Korea.

1958:

Faisal II, the last king of Iraq, was overthrown by a military
coup d’état led by Abd al-Karim Qasim.

1987:

Over 100 mm (3.9 in) of rain fell in a two-and-a-half-hour
period in Montreal, causing severe flooding and over C$220 million in
damages.

1995:

The MPEG-2 Audio Layer III audio coding format was given the
filename extension by which it became known: MP3.

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Wiktionary’s word of the day:

galette:
1. A type of flat, round cake from France.
2. Short for Breton galette: a crêpe or pancake made with buckwheat flour,
and often with a savoury filling, originally from Upper Brittany in
France.

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Wikiquote quote of the day:

  Arise, children of the Fatherland, The day of glory has arrived!
Against us tyranny’s Bloody banner is raised … Do you hear, in the
countryside, The roar of those ferocious soldiers? They’re coming right
into your arms To slaughter your sons, your companions!! To arms,
citizens, Form your battalions, Let’s march, let’s march!  
–Claude Joseph Rouget de Lisle

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