Local solicitor Antony Brannick has been providing ‘legal aid’ of a rather different kind to a group of professional musicians recently.
Antony, who is a family law specialist with Wrigley Claydon solicitors and based at their Todmorden office, has been using his musical skills as a conductor in the world premiere of a new opera Madame X by established composer Tim Benjamin.
Antony said, “I’ve always been interested in music throughout my legal career and last year the opportunity arose to conduct the first performances of Tim’s previous opera Emily”. The success of this opera, about the life and times of the militant suffragette Emily Wilding Davison, who was killed in a collision with the King’s horse at the Derby in 1913, has led to a further collaboration with Tim on the new opera which, like Emily, premiered at the Hippodrome Theatre in Todmorden. However, Madame X has since been performed at the Square Chapel in Halifax and also the Arcola Theatre in London as part of the Grimeborn Festival, receiving extremely positive audience reaction. Critical reviews have also been encouraging, praising the work of the musicians.
Antony has found taking the opera on tour both demanding and exciting, “I’ve felt privileged to work with a strong cast of excellent musicians and it’s been very interesting to reflect on the teamwork and preparation involved and a comparison with legal work in family proceedings. I have admired the skill and dedication of the singers just as in the same way I would hope to apply such principles to my own work in the office and at court. A lot of hard work goes in to the preparation for every performance and it’s interesting to get a somewhat different type of review!”
Antony is part of a team of lawyers at Wrigley Claydon led by Jill Walker, head of department, together with Corinne Bailey, family executive. Between them they have a wealth of experience in all aspects of family law.
There is one further chance to see Madame X which receives its final performance of this run at the Royal Northern College of Music, Oxford Road, Manchester on Thursday 25th September 2014. Tickets can be booked online through the RNCM or via the opera website www.madame-x.co.uk