Sunday, 23 August 2020

R.I.P. Anne Ozorio

I have just heard, with great sadness, news of the death of my friend Anne Ozorio. Anne and I first 'met' on the Mahler List, which I joined when, somewhat belatedly, I finally started using the Internet. Hers was always one of the most intelligent, interesting, and generous whilst critical voices there. We became friends, writing to each other often (indeed after both of us had left that list, following unpleasantness neither of us had time or energy to indulge). We then met in person for the first time when she drove over to Cambridge for the launch party for my first book, Treacherous Bonds and Laughing Fire. She acquired a copy and wrote a generous review.

Then, when I tentatively started writing more about music in performance, she encouraged me and recommend that, as well as writing for my blog, I write for another website, Seen and Heard, for which I still write. Apart from anything else, that enabled me to attend more performances and to gain greater experience in such writing, which has in turn greatly influenced much of my 'academic' work too (not that she or I would ever have made such a hard and fast distinction). My most recent completed article, 14,000 words on Frank Castorf's Ring and the politics of postdramatic theatre may otherwise never have been written.

Anne's blog, Classical Iconoclast, was always one I would check and read with enthusiasm, even, perhaps especially when we differed, in order that I might be challenged to rethink. I shall greatly miss her thoughts on performances and on much else, not least her Macau family history, from which she has been posting so many fascinating old pictures with commentary. I shall also miss her presence at the Wigmore Hall, the Festival Hall, Covent Garden, and many other venues, whenever, God willing, they reopen. Bumping into her and, often, Roger too for a pre-performance or interval chat was so often part and parcel of the experience, not least with respect to new music. Anne's voice will, of course, remain with us.

R.I.P. Anne.