Bristol Choral Society

Bristol Choral Society Messiah 2018

Bristol Choral Society
Bristol Ensemble

Hilary Campbell Conductor
Lucy De Butts Soprano
Anna Harvey Alto
Christopher Bowen Tenor

Returning to tradition we look forward to seeing you at our annual performance of Handel’s glorious Messiah. For many, Christmas starts with an outing to this masterpiece, and Clifton Cathedral should provide the perfect setting to hear the work in all its grandeur.

Handel composed his most famous piece in 1741, continuing to work on it after its initial performance, to arrive at the version we know today in 1754. It tells the story of Jesus’s birth, life, death, resurrection and victory over sin and death, through impressive solo arias interspersed with compelling choruses.

The words make the piece and we are told that Handel made no changes to the libretto compiled by Charles Jennens from the King James Bible, and from the Psalms included with the Book of Common Prayer. Jennens was a conscientious objector in his own way. His religious and political views – he opposed the Act of Settlement of 1701 – prevented him pursuing any form of public career.

Since the 1740s Messiah has been sung annually by many choirs and remains one of the best-known and most frequently performed choral works in Western music.