Arguably the most famous oratorio ever written and certainly Handel’s best known work, Messiah needs little introduction. Composed in a staggering twenty-four days, the piece was first performed in Dublin in 1742 where it received a rapturous welcome. Not so the following year when it premiered in London to a distinctly hostile reception. It wasn’t until Messiah began to be presented in charity performances at the Foundling Hospital in London that the public started to embrace the work we now regard as Handel’s greatest composition.
The Sixteen choir and orchestra
Harry Christophers conductor
Carolyn Sampson soprano
Catherine Wyn-Rogers mezzo-soprano
Joshua Ellicott tenor
Henry Waddington bass