The Brownwood Lyric Theatre Company will present “the most performed music and message in all of history” — George Frideric Handel’s “Messiah” Thursday evening in Brownwood’s First United Methodist Church sanctuary.
This is the fourth year a community choir has assembled for this special production and will perform the Christmas section and “Hallelujah Chorus” of “Messiah.” Dr. Robert Tucker will again serve as director of the musical work and Dr. Allen Reed is organist.
Soloists include Dr. Celeste Church, soprano; Cindy Morgan, alto; Dr. Greg Church, tenor; and Dr. Gary Butka, bass.
The performance begins at 7:30 p.m. The Brownwood First United Methodist Church is located at 2500 11th St. There is no admission charge for the concert.
In August 1741, Handel, a devout Christian, became so inspired reading the scriptures from the Old and New Testaments that he was overcome by their power. The music began dancing and exploding within him, he later confessed, and he immediately shut himself in and began working night and day, often forgetting to eat.
Historical explanations say Mandel’s servants could hear his sobs and prayers as he labored over the inspired text. Mandel finished the original libretto and score in 24 days.
The work premiered April 13, 1742, in Dublin, Ireland, as a secular theater performance during Lent. The work is divided into three parts and each addresses specific events in the life of Christ. The first part is primarily concerned with the Advent and Christmas stories. The second part chronicles Christ’s passion, resurrection, ascension and the evangelization to the world of the Christian message and the final part is largely based on the events chronicled in The Revelation to St. John.
During Handel’s life, the distinctly three-part work was most often performed in its entirety, usually during the spring, or Lent. But since Handel’s death, it has become quite common to perform the first part of the work during the Advent season.