Music: Heiress Presumptive

At London's Covent Garden last week, the curtain opened on an intriguing pair of firsts: the first all-British full-length ballet, for which Benjamin Britten had composed his first ballet score. It was written especially for Ballerina Svetlana Beriosova, rising young (23) star of the Sadler's Wells Ballet.

The Prince of the Pagodas was a mixed bag of occasionally singing melody and frequently turgid choreography. For at least two acts, Britten's music was sonorous and strong, enriched by a variety of percussion effects and deft syncopation. Less successful was the work of Choreographer John Cranko, who all too frequently allowed the story...

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