Brian Kay at Messiah from Scratch (photo: Chris Christodoulou)

Brian Kay at Messiah from Scratch (photo: Chris Christodoulou)

Sunday 12 November 2017


Royal Albert Hall, 7.00 pm

More about this concert

About the performers
(clicking on the links will take you to a biography of each individual artist)
The soloists for Messiah from Scratch 2017 are Alison Rose (soprano), Angharad Lyddon (mezzo-soprano), William Wallace (tenor) and Jake Muffett (baritone).  The Great Organ will be played by Jane Watts, and the harpsichord by Andrew Parnell, with the English Festival Orchestra conducted by Brian Kay.

About the charity
The evening concert supports the British Heart Foundation through programme sales, bucket collections, advertising and sales of merchandise. Messiah from Scratch® has been associated with the BHF since at least 1978, and in February 2010, Don and Ann Monro received on behalf of The Really Big Chorus a ‘Heart Hero’ award from the Foundation, in recognition of the sums (close to a quarter of a million pounds) raised for the heart charity at our Royal Albert Hall concerts.

About Messiah
Unbelievably, Handel wrote the 52 movements of Messiah in a mere 24 days, working at a feverish pace to keep up with his imagination.  The first performance in Dublin the following year (1742) was greeted with acclaim, but the London première a year later was met with indifference, even hostility. Handel had to wait until 1749 before Messiah achieved the popularity it has enjoyed ever since. The first ‘charity’ performance was given in 1750 for the Foundling Hospital, since when Messiah has probably raised more money for charity than any other piece of music.

The tradition of English audiences standing at the opening of the Hallelujah Chorus dates back to the time of King George II who is reported to have sprung to his feet at this point in the performance, with the rest of the audience deferentially following suit. It has been assumed that the King did so in sheer admiration, but there are several other possible explanations!

For information on dining, parking and disabled access please contact the Royal Albert Hall (follow the link or telephone 020 7589 8212).

Click back to the Messiah from Scratch® front page, or click on for booking or details for singers.