Clarissa (1748) by Samuel Richardson
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Great classical music inspired by books
14. Clarissa (1748) by Samuel Richardson
‘A plot whose essence can fit onto a postage-stamp evolves into the longest fiction in the English language,’ is how English composer Robin Holloway described Richardson’s massive novel. The composer spent years adapting it and then wrote all the music for his opera of 'Clarissa' in a fortnight in 1976. It was premiered by English National Opera in 1990.