Sunday, December 5, 2010

Handel's Messiah at Symphony Hall, Boston

Photo Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

'Words printed here are concepts. You must go through the experiences.'
(St. Augustine, 354-430)

And, after all these years, I still feel privileged to have attended the 156th performance of Handel's Messiah at Boston Symphony Hall. The building itself is considered one of the finest Concert Halls in the world and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Opened in 1900, it was designed by architects McKinn, Mead & White who garnered the help of Wallace Clement Sabine, a professor of Physics at Harvard who acoustically perfected exquisite sound to each of the 2,625 seats. It has been described as 'unassuming elegance in a shoebox shape', referring to its 61 foot high, 75 foot wide and 125 foot long building. The stage walls are sloped inward to further focus the sound, and the seats remain original and uncomfortable, sparely shaped and thinly covered with leather.

Handel composed this oratorio between August 22 through September 14, 1741. It was first performed in London in 1743, and it is said that King George II was so moved by the Hallelujah Chorus that he 'sprung to his feet' and in respect for the sovereign, the entire audience followed suit. To this day, the tradition continues. Handel's Messiah is an absolutely stunning performance of musical and choral excellence. Such a very happy way to celebrate my special day and the beginning of the Christmas season. If you cannot attend, listen to it; again and again it will inspire you.

A heartfelt thank you to my parents and my son Aaron for making this day special for me. I love you all!

1 comment:

Becky said...

Mrs. Wheeler-

Great pictures from a memorable event! So glad you were able to continue the tradition and share in the cultural history. Your blog is a fantastic compilation of aesthetics treasures and the emotional attachment that makes them significant.


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