Timeless Messiah coming to St. George’s United

Whether you are a seasoned choral veteran, shower soloist or just want to listen, here’s your opportunity to embrace the festive season along with members of the North Island Choral Society, soloists and orchestra in two performances of George Frederick Handel’s timeless Messiah.

The concerts take place at St. George’s United Church, 505 6th St., Courtenay on Friday, Dec. 1 (7:30 p.m.) and Saturday, Dec. 2 (2 p.m.).

Under the direction of long-time artistic director Paul Colthorpe with Elvera Penner, accompanist, the audience will want to sing and hear such favourites as the famous Hallelujah Chorus and the Amen while being led by the 80 strong choir and the NICS orchestra with trumpeters adding dimension to all the voices.

The soloists have appeared many times before with the North Island Choral Society. They are Megan Skidmore (soprano), Lisa Stephens-Deith (contralto), David Brown (tenor) and Christopher Bellamy (bass).

The oratorio is full of memorable arias like I Know That My Redeemer Liveth, sung by the soprano, and Every Valley Shall Be Exalted, sung by the tenor. The contralto sings the haunting aria: He Was Despised and the bass sings powerfully of redemption in The Trumpet Shall Sound.

Handel was born in Germany, but settled in England and became a British citizen. In 1741, the Rev. Charles Jennens, an Anglican priest and occasional collaborator with Handel, presented him with words carefully chosen from the Old and New Testaments. The words or libretto, as it is known to the music world, became the foundation of a successful oratorio that actually saved Handel from approaching bankruptcy.

Throughout Messiah, Handel’s writing for orchestra and solo voices is masterly, the fruits of a lifetime’s musical experience. Arguably, though, it is the choruses that raise Messiah onto a different plane, thanks to Handel’s unerring ability to grasp the dramatic potential of each text, and the astonishing power and variety of his choral writing. He must have known everyone wanted to sing them.

More than 275 years have passed since the oratorio was first performed in Dublin, Ireland, yet Messiah’s status as one of the great icons of European music remains undiminished. It continues to speak to millions of people of many cultures and faiths around the world.

Tickets are $20 and can be purchased at Blue Heron Books in Comox and Laughing Oyster Books in Courtenay. Tickets can also be obtained at the door. Limited tickets for ages 12 and under can be purchased at the bookshops and at the door for $5.

NICS will provide copies of the words to those who do not have their own score.

FMI: northislandchoral.ca

Just Posted

North Island College holding information session on new culinary diploma

Get a sneak peek at the new culinary kitchen at the Campbell River campus

CV Science Pub discusses the Comox Lake watershed

How much do you really know about where your drinking water comes… Continue reading

One large brood

On Sunday, May 19, a lone mallard showed up with 22 ducklings… Continue reading

McHappy Day raises $7,000 in the Comox Valley

This is the fourth year funds have gone to the Comox Valley Child Development Association

Millard Creek public nature walk Sunday

Local biologist guides public through popular Courtenay trail

Killer of Calgary mother, daughter gets no parole for 50 years

A jury found Edward Downey guilty last year in the deaths of Sara Baillie, 34, and five-year-old Taliyah Marsman

Sitting and sleeping on downtown sidewalks could net $100 fine in Penticton

The measure, which still requires final approval, would be enforced between May and Sept. 30

Survey finds 15% of Canadian cannabis users with a valid licence drive within two hours of using

Survey also finds middle-aged men are upping their usage following legalization

B.C. man killed in logging accident ‘would have done anything for anyone’

Wife remembers 43-year old Petr Koncek, father of two children

Ottawa spending $24.5M to research on health benefits, risks of pot use

$390,000 will fund two cannabis public awareness

Crackdown on money laundering does not include federal public inquiry: minister

An independent report commissioned concluded $7.4 billion was laundered in B.C. last year

Trudeau’s action plan on climate change brings B.C. politician out of retirement

Terry Lake, a former B.C. health minister, is running for federal office in Kamloops-Thompson-Cariboo

Most Read