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Work: Messiah

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Fact file
ComposerHandel, George Frideric (1685-1759)
Work typeOpera / Oratorio
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St AlbansHandel Messiah

Handel Messiah
Handel: Messiah
London Orchestra da Camera; David Temple; Hertfordshire Chorus; Zoe Brookshaw; Diana Moore; Ben Johnson

BudapestMessiahNew production

Handel: Messiah
Ferenc Anger; Hungarian State Opera; Gergely Zöldy; Mónika Szelei; Marianna Venekei; Hungarian State Opera Orchestra


Handel: Messiah
Clemens Flämig; Batzdorfer Hofkapelle; Stadtsingechor zu Halle; Feuersinger Miriam; Alex Potter

BirminghamHandel's Messiah

© reginaldmobley.com
Handel: Messiah
City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra; Richard Egarr; Mary Bevan; Reginald Mobley; James Gilchrist; Christopher Purves

SalzburgLe Messie

Handel: Messiah
Les Musiciens du Louvre Grenoble; Marc Minkowski; Elena Tsallagova; Wiebke Lehmkuhl; Richard Croft; José Coca Loza
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An early Christmas present from Stephen Layton & Co.

Stephen Layton © Keith Saunders
A lithe and engaging performance of Handel's festive regular from Polyphony and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment.
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Not quite the Messiah at the Royal Albert Hall

Benjamin Appl © Uwe Arens | Sony Classical
Competent if underwhelming Handel from the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Maxim Emelyanchev.
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Britten Sinfonia's electric Messiah: Look, no hands!

Sophie Bevan © Sussie Ahlburg
A conductorless performance of Handel's masterpiece lights up the Barbican.
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Montreal audience elated with OSM's Messiah

Paul McCreesh conducts the OSM © Antoine Saito
It is a high order to mount a captivating performance of a work so widely known and performed as Handel's Messiah
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A festive Messiah heralds the holidays in Cleveland

Tamara Mumford © Fay Fox
Jane Glover’s Cleveland Orchestra performance of Handel’s Messiah was both celebratory and historically-informed.
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Messiah, Handel's oratorio celebrating the arrival of Jesus Christ the Saviour, is a perennial favourite in England and the United States. At Christmas time, particularly, every year sees a raft of performances, ranging from amateur choirs up to the best choirs in the land. In Australia, the Melbourne Philharmonic has performed the Messiah every year in the 157 years since it was formed.

The work's première was in Dublin on 13th April 1742. Twelve years later, in 1754, a historically important performance was the 1754 benefit concert for the Foundling Hospital, which Handel co-founded. By then, Messiah had been much revised and had reached the form commonly played today.