Britten’s nephew, Pears’s niece, have died

Britten’s nephew, Pears’s niece, have died


norman lebrecht

September 21, 2016

From the

Alan Britten, president of the Friends of Aldeburgh, has died at 78. During a career in the oil industry, he rose to become Vice-President for Mobil Europe.

Susan (Sue) Phipps, another lifelong Aldeburgh supporter, has died at 85. Sue was the daughter of Peter Pears’s elder brother Arthur. Her husband, Jack Phipps, was manager of the Aldeburgh Festival, 1979-81. Her son is the composer, Martin Phipps.

Niece and nephew died within days of one another.



  • Tony Britten says:

    Very sad to hear about Sue Phipps. As one of the last links to Britten and Pears, she was a most eloquent contributor to my film; ‘Benjamin Britten – Peace and Conflict’. But just as important, she was a lovely lady – charming and fun. RIP

    Tony Britten

  • Bill Lloyd says:

    I remember Alan Britten as a generous and genial figure at Aldeburgh, especially supportive of young musicians taking part in the Britten-Pears Young Artist Programme which I then led. He hosted Festival concerts of their work every year at the Jubilee Hall, followed by cheerfully boozy lunches for all participants. If his own musical tastes didn’t always extend to the most avant-garde of new repertoire, he was nonetheless determined that Britten’s own spirit of exploration and support of younger colleagues should continue be represented at the festival. I valued his support and constructive friendship enormously, not least as a much-needed “corrective” to any tendencies towards corporatism which occasionally reared their head. He will be much missed.