Handel’s Messiah – Stephanie Heriger

The holidays are always such a busy time. Even today, the day after Christmas, I still have multiple to-do lists calling my name. Writing this post has been “to-do” number one since last Friday, so you can see the progress I’ve made…

Maybe that’s why the opening tenor arioso of Handel’s Messiah has always struck me as being especially fitting. “Comfort ye my people” – for me, this is an invitation, a gentle reminder to slow down and listen. And it was during last Thursday’s performance that I realized that this was the first time I actually did that – listen to a live performance of the Messiah. I’ve been to a number of other performances, yes, but I’ve always been a member of the choir, never a member of the audience. It was strange to be on the receiving end. It also took me a little while before I stopped listening for all the soprano part cues.

In keeping with my theme of time and how there’s just not enough of it, I’m cutting today’s post a little short, but I will leave you with the following:

In Part III, the bass soloist sings “the trumpet shall sound . . . and we shall be changed.” Just like the tenor’s opening lines, this too seems especially fitting. And, in a musical sense, it’s my wish for everyone who happens to read this post – once the trumpet sounds (or the piano, or the cello, or the soloist, etc.), let yourself be changed.  Music can (and should) do that.

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