“Christmas is the spirit of giving without a thought of getting. It is happiness because we see joy in people. It is forgetting self and finding time for others. It is discarding the meaningless and stressing the true values.” - Thomas S. Monson
George Frideric Handel was born February 23, 1685, Halle, Germany and died April 14, 1759, London, England. This composer of the late Baroque era contemporary of J.S. Bach, noted particularly for his operas, oratorios (vocal and choral concert works, usually religious in subject matter), and instrumental compositions. He is one of the most brilliant and gifted of composers, with his works. He wrote the most famous of all oratorios, the "Messiah", and is also known for such occasional pieces as Water Music (1717) and Music for the Royal Fireworks (1749).
Handel in 1741, was at the height of his powers, and the Messiah was composed within an amazing 23 days! Messiah was given its first performance in Dublin on April 13, 1742, and created a deep impression. Handel continued with the composition of many more oratorios and he made this, and large-scale choral works the most popular musical forms in England. He had created for himself a new public among the rising middle classes, who would have turned away in moral indignation from the Italian opera but who were quite ready to be edified by a moral tale from the Bible, set to suitably dignified and, by now, rather old-fashioned music. Ever since then, Handel’s Messiah has been performed almost continuously and nowadays its performance is a much-loved Christmas tradition in many English-speaking countries.
If you are rather stressed with the Christmas season and the hectic rush, take some time to listen to the “Messiah” and be refreshed mentally and spiritually.
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