Georg Friedrich Händel’s Messiah (HWV 56) is an English-language oratorio composed in 1741 with a scriptural text compiled by Charles Jennens from the King James Bible, and from the version of the Psalms included with the Book of Common Prayer. Originally intended as thought-provoking inspiration for Lent and Easter, this 259-page score was composed in a mere 3-4 weeks.
During the 1700’s, opera and composers were sometimes the subject of moral outrage and some considered this work, as hard as it is to believe, blasphemous. Händel chose to premier his work in Dublin near Easter time, on April 13, 1742, in part due to the lukewarm response to the previous years’ works in London and also because he was trying to test the work away from Anglican bishops.
Mozart reorchestrated Messiah in 1789 but remained in awe of the composer. “Händel understands effect better than any of us — when he chooses, he strikes like a thunderbolt… though he often saunters, in the manner of his time, this is always something there,” said Mozart.
Here, with voice type and listening links, are 18 texts on IPA Source from Händel’s oratorio, Messiah.
Perfect for Soprano: How Beautiful Are the Feet – Their Sound Is Gone Out
Listen to Lynne Dawson: https://youtu.be/IFBEK5Xks6c