Manchester Baroque Handel's Messiah at Manchester Cathedral: Supporting A Bed Every Night scheme

Manchester Baroque Handel's Messiah at Manchester Cathedral: Supporting A Bed Every Night scheme


Posted 2022-11-20 by David Keyworthfollow

Sat 10 Dec 2022

An oratorio first performed nearly 300 years ago will help tackle homelessness and rough sleeping in today's Manchester.

Professional ensemble Manchester Baroque, has committed to donate profits and other monies collected from its forthcoming performance of Handel's Messiah at Manchester Cathedral, to Andy Burnham's scheme.

Welcoming the news, the Greater Manchester Mayor said: "We know that this winter the cost-of-living crisis is going to put huge pressure on people's finances, and those already living on the edge could be pushed over it. That's why we're so grateful to Manchester Cathedral and Manchester Baroque for dedicating their annual performance of the Messiah towards A Bed Every Night."

The oratorio, by George Frideric Handel (1685–1759), has benefitted good causes since its earliest performances. It was first sung at Easter, rather than Christmas, in Dublin's New Music Hall in Fishamble Street in 1742 and raised funds for hospitals and prisoners debt relief.

It reached the ears of London a year later and 1750 saw the first annual charity performances to raise money for Bloomsbury's Foundling Hospital - to care for the babies who would otherwise have been abandoned. Handel conducted or attended every performance until his death in 1759 and they continued after his demise.

The text of the oratorio was compiled from the King James Bible and the Coverdale Psalter by Charles Jennens. It is divided into three parts: Old Testament prophesies of the Messiah's birth; New Testament stories of the birth of Christ, his death, and his resurrection; and verses relating ultimately to Judgment Day, with the text of the final chorus drawn from the Book of Revelation. It ends with Amen.

Handel left, in his will, a fair copy of the score to the governors of the Foundling Hospital. The charitable aspect of the hospital continues to this day in the offspring of Coram - the UK's first dedicated children's charity.Manchester Baroque was formed in 2019 to fill a gap: historical performance of early music on period instruments.

The ensemble has quickly established their own performances of Handel's oratorio as part of their and Manchester's festive musical line-up.Concertgoers may or may not stand for the Messiah's Hallelujah Chorus. This tradition of audience-participation arises from an unsubstantiated report that King George II was so moved by the rousing music that he spontaneously rose to his feet, resulting in loyal subjects around him doing the same.

The Greater Manchester Mayor's Charity (GMMC) was founded in 2018. Their website states: Nobody in our city region should be without a safe, secure place to call home. Yet in this complex and unjust climate, there are many for whom this is simply out of reach. It isn't right. Not anywhere, but certainly not here.

More information on the Mayors Charity can be found here

!date 10/12/2022 -- 10/12/2022
71440 - 2023-01-26 01:53:43


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