The world première performance of “Emily: an opera”, a brand new full-length opera by composer Tim Benjamin, took place in the Todmorden Hippodrome Theatre in early July 2013. The opera was based on the life and tragic death of the militant suffragette Emily Wilding Davison who died after a collision with the king’s horse at Epsom during the Derby race in June 1913.
The musical director for the performances was our very own Antony Brannick of our family law department who is based at the Todmorden office. “It was a huge undertaking!”, said Antony who has for many years been the musical director of Todmorden Choral Society and in that capacity has conducted the choir and Todmorden Orchestra in many of the major choral works of the repertoire, including Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Mozart’s Requiem, Haydn’s Creation and Handel’s Messiah.
“Whilst I’d plenty of experience in conducting choirs with orchestra, this was a completely new experience for me. It required a lot of hard work in preparation and time commitment for the rehearsals and I’m very grateful for the support of Wrigley Claydon through that period. It was a wonderful opportunity to work closely with some very accomplished professional singers who were very generous with their time. The production involved local singers for the chorus of policemen and suffragettes and the chamber orchestra was formed from some brilliant local amateur musicians. The week of the performance was extremely exciting – thank goodness there was an after-show party!”
The three performances were very well attended and the reviews were excellent. For further information go to the website www.emilyopera.co.uk
Will “Emily” go on tour? Watch this space!”