The Oddveig Memorial Lecture, 2020 - Friday 14th February by Espen Selvik, Bergen
By trollheimen, May 11 2020 10:07PM
We were all delighted that such a talented all-round entertainer gave us his time for this annual lecture. Feedback from everyone confirmed that this year’s lecture was quite outstanding. Margaret McKay gave a very informative introduction with a number of great anecdotes that illustrated Oddveig’s many attributes. In hindsight, this lecture ticked all her wishes for her legacy.
Espen then presented a hugely entertaining performance - yes ‘performance’ that had everything: an interesting topic on “Gulating” - the origins of Norwegian democracy; lots of music from his French Horn accompanied by his very common “garden hose”: all delivered in such a jovial spirit that I’m sure the security guard on level 1, could have heard the laughter, particularly when describing his meeting with Kong Olav. Even when delivering his Amazing Grace recital, he began with a story on how the words of Amazing Grace were written.
His main topic of “Gulating” - the origins of Norwegian Democracy - as he said, the Vikings simply just gave up the “boring job” of slaughtering people, and decided that talking around a fire with a beer was far more productive! Interestingly, “Stortinget” - the Norwegian Parliament - has the same meaning “ting” from “Gulating” in its name! And later, I did note that Espen had a great interest in making “ting” an open research topic in order to find out more on what was contributed from where in the Viking world - Norway, Scotland and the northern islands, Ireland and The Isle of Man.
Espen also planned some musical interludes that were all well received. In particular, the real treat of his guest, Linn Elise Solberg Rognes to sing - she was in his choir in Bergen. Her voice was simply beautiful which everyone - without exception - fully appreciated! Hopefully, we will see her again at our meetings during her stay in Glasgow. We ended this entertaining evening with a rousing rendition of ‘ Ja, vi elsker dette landet’ by the audience, accompanied by Espen’s French Horn. If you want to see more pictures and actually listen to him and Line Elise, use this link...
Thanks also goes to our Vice President Tommy Thompson for his excellent vote of thanks. Of course, the catering was excellent (as usual) with some sublime cinnamon biscuits - thank you Katherine! And of course, we can’t forget about the other council members who did their usual good jobs.