Film score
Subtitle: Film score
Other titles: God's chillun

Title under which the film was eventually released

Period of composition: 2 Sep - 23 Oct 1935
Date notes

The music was written between these dates, but discussions for the project continued until 4 November 1935, when it was abandoned for financial reasons. Britten notes a recording of the score on 8 Jan 1938 after the project had been revived.

Genre: Incidental music
Text: (of film script and vocal numbers) W.H. Auden (1907-1973)
Performing forces:

Commentator, STB soloists, chorus (TB) - ob (=ca, tamb) - 2 perc (tamb, susp cymb, 3 tam, sd, td, bd - harp, pf (=bd)


The manuscript score is entitled Negroes, but it was released under the name 'God's chillun' in 1938. The script was by W.H. Auden, and was edited by Max Anderson, Gordon Hales and Rona Morrison for the GPO Film Unit.

A page of text belong to this project comprises four stanzas written in Britten's hand, beginning 'Acts of injustice done'. These words, though not set in the score, are spoken at the end of the film. These same stanzas reappear in a different context at the end of The ascent of F6 (Feb 1937), in a section for which Britten did provide music.