WHY PERFORM HANDEL'S MESSIAH IN MOZART'S RE-ORCHESTRATION?
Our CEO and Artistic Director Meurig Bowen and Co-Director and Producer of the BBC Singers Jonathan Manners discuss their new approach towards Handel’s Messiah, through Mozart’s re-orchestration.
In Handel’s lifetime, no performance of Messiah was ever the same as the next. He shifted things around according to the availability of singers, and since then, Messiah has come in all shapes and sizes: from massed versions in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, to small-scale historical reproductions more recently.
With Mozart’s addition of trombones, horns, flutes and clarinets to Handel’s oboes, bassoon and trumpets, there is an abundance of rich and surprising textures – but every inspired note of Handel’s original remains the same.
Britten Sinfonia and the BBC Singers perform Handel’s seasonal masterpiece in Mozart’s compelling re-imagining for late 18th century orchestra on 10th and 12th December.
10th December, Saffron Hall.
12th December, Barbican London.
Video created by composer David John Roche.
Recordings: Polyphony & Britten Sinfonia, Hyperion Records. Bach-Collegium Stuttgart & Helmuth Rilling, Hänssler Classics.