Britten and Pears began sketching the scenario of the opera as early as 1941.
Peter Pears Peter Grimes, Joan Cross Ellen Orford, Edith Coates Auntie, Blanche Turner Niece 1, Minnia Bower Niece II, Roderick Jones Balstrode, Valetta Iacopi Mrs Sedley, Tom Culbert The Rector, Frank Vaughan Hobson, Saša Machov Dr Crabbe, Leonard Thompson Boy, chorus and orchestra of the Sadler's Wells Opera Company
Eric Crozier prod, Kenneth Green design, Reginald Goodall cond
Pears, Eric Crozier and Ronald Duncan also contributed to the libretto.
Principals: Peter Grimes ten, Boy, his apprentice silent, Ellen Orford sop, Captain Balstrode bar, Auntie contr, Niece I sop, Niece II sop, Bob Boles ten, Swallow bass, Mrs Sedley mez, Rev Horace Adams ten, Ned Keene bar, Hobson bass, Dr Crabbe* silent.
Chorus: townspeople and fisherfolk
[*Dr Crabbe was renamed 'Dr Thorp' in the original production and the first edition of the vocal score. The character's original name was restored in the second edition.]
Orchestra: 2 fl (=picc), 2 ob (II=ca), 2 cl in B flat and A (II=cl in E flat), 2 bn, dbn - 4 hn, 3 tpt (I, II in C, III in D), 3 trbn, tuba - timp, 2 perc (sd, td, bd, tamb, trgl, cymb, gong, whip, xyl, rattle) - cel, harp - str
Off stage: org, bells, tuba
Off-stage band (members of the orchestra): 2 cl in B flat, perc (cymb, sd, bd), solo vn, solo db, pf (ad lib.)
Prologue & Act I: 54 mins;
Act II: 50 mins;
Act III: 39 mins