New book’s look at a life in opera
Top academic looks back on 50 years of his musical travels
By Graham Chalmers
A local man who reached the very top of his academic career is now threatening to do the same in the world of writing about in opera in his retirement.
Professor Anthony Ogus CBE, to give him only part of his title, has had many books and papers published in the field of the regulation and economic analysis of law during his time as emeritus professor of law at the University of Manchester.
Now retired, what this distinguished former academic who now lives in Goldsborough near Knaresborough really cares about, however, are the arts in general, and, opera in particular.
Music fans who buy a copy of the highly entertaining Travels with my Opera Glasses are guaranteed clear opinions, as well as a wealth of knowledge on his subject.
“The top places to go abroad for opera are Brussels and Frankfurt.
“There you find a combination of high quality musical performance and theatrical presentation without being too bizarre, meaningful without being old fashioned.”
Since first hitch-hiking across Italy in 1966 to catch as many operas as possible, Professor Ogus has seen it all in the world of classical music – the good, the bad, and, occasionally, the ugly.
He said: “There’s something really extraordinary about the singing voice being used to convey emotion.
“I first saw opera as a teenager in the early 1960s and I’ve been hooked ever since. It was probably Wagner’s Flying Dutchman that did it.”
In the past half century, Professor Ogus has attended an impressive 1,358 opera performances, though that total has probably risen in the time it’s taken to write this article.