In the summer of 1741 George Frideric Handel, at the peak of his musical prowess but depressed and in debt, composed Messiah in just 24 days. Although the work was conceived for the theatre, it has become common practice since Handel's death to perform Messiah during Advent—the preparatory period of the Christmas season. Last week I [along with nearly 1700 people in the Peristyle Theater of the Toledo Museum of Art] stood, just as King George II did when he first heard the movement known as the "The Hallelujah Chorus". The lyrics come from a few texts in New Testament book of Revelation:
Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth [Revelation 19:6]. The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever [Revelation 11:15]. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS [Revelation 19:16].
If you missed Messiah at the Peristyle, you can hear it again at Toledo First Church on Sunday December 13 @ 7pm. I'll be there!!! Hope you are too. In the meantime, click the triangular play button below to see the impact Messiah continues to make. Even among teenagers today!!! Enjoy!!!