Long Beach Camerata Rings In Holidays With Handel’s “Messiah” Tradition
Hallelujah! Your holiday is not complete until you experience the magic of Long Beach Camerata Singers’ annual Handel’s “Messiah” concert!
As part of the Camerata’s 57th season, the 75-voice chorus — led by Grammy Award-winning Artistic Director Dr. James K. Bass — will be joined on the stage by artists from the Long Beach Symphony Orchestra on Thursday, Dec. 22, at the Beverly O’Neill Theater. Tickets are available now and might just fit in stockings hung with care.
“This concert is our most popular annual event, featuring a mixture of arias and choruses that are melodic, rhythmic and accessible to the listener,” Camerata President Jan Hower said. “The pandemic showed us the importance of community gatherings to greet our neighbors, to share live performance and celebrate the beauty of this musical masterpiece.”
George Frideric Handel’s oratorio was composed in 1742 in just three short weeks, with text compiled from the King James Bible and the Coverdale Psalter by Charles Jennens. “Messiah” has been performed every year since then, connecting generations of friends and families through this musical tradition.
Hower noted that this year marks the 15th annual Handel’s “Messiah” performance organized by Long Beach Camerata Singers.
“Every time I listen to this music I come away with new insights — about the text, the structure and the story Handel tells,” Hower said. “It is this powerful storytelling that sets ‘Messiah’ apart from other important works and has contributed to its enduring appeal.”
The Camerata Singers say the annual concert brings family and friends together for a holiday musical tradition they can return to year after year, generation after generation. After all, “Messiah” has already endured for nearly 300 years — for good reason — with its dramatic arias and powerful recitatives that never fail to thrill.
And the relaxing power of the music and its overall message will hit home, no matter your belief system, as the familiar sounds overflow with important reminders to have goodwill toward others, no matter what denomination you subscribe to.
“This joyous showcase of Handel’s masterpiece is a beloved Long Beach tradition,” Hower said. “It has a certain healing power and a sense of homecoming that never fails to make the holidays that much happier.”
The performance will take place at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 22 at the Beverly O’Neill Theater (300 E. Ocean Blvd.). A pre-concert conversation about the music will begin at 6:30 p.m. Give the gift of music this season with tickets to the event starting at $40 at LongBeachCamerataSingers.org.
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