Messiah, Hallelujah Chorus by G, Handel

Posted: October 17th, 2013





Messiah, Hallelujah Chorus by G, Handel

            Messiah is the music piece that was written in the English language by composer known as George Handel, who was well known in countries such as Britain and Germany. Handel applied the writings from biblical scriptures that were assembled by one of the famous writers in the King James Version known as Charles Jennens. In addition, some of the writings were also obtained from one of the biblical books referring to Psalms including the section known as the manuscript of Common prayer. The performance of the Messiah music piece was first witnessed in the year 1742 and later obtained its British premiere after one year.

Following the reserved civic reception the music piece acquired in its reputation, it emerged in being one of the most well recognized and commonly performed pieces in the Western world. The structure of the Messiah music piece is similar to the conventional composition but is not arranged in a theatrical form since no impressions of characters are found. In addition, there is only a minimal presence of straightforward dialogue.

As an alternative, the writing used from Charles Jennens is an expanded expression representing Jesus Christ being the Messiah. It goes through the prophetic writings of the biblical characters like Isaiah, and it involves the life and death of Jesus Christ to his exaltation in heaven. Handel wrote the Messiah music piece for reserved oral and instrumental power with added voluntary scenarios for several individual digits. Following Handel’s death, his music piece was used in several key performances by huge orchestras and choral groups. In addition, attempts were made to revise and amplify its structure by the famous composer known as Amadeus Mozart (Meyer 55).

The Messiah music piece was finished within a period of twenty-four days through a hasty composition.  After Handel receiving Jennens’s writing, he started working on the Messiah piece on 22 August 1741. Several of his accounts show that he finished the outline of the first section on the 28th, the second on 6 September and the final section on the 14th. As Handel was concluding the manuscript, he noted down the letters SDG to symbolize the Latin words, Soli Deo Gloria in meaning only God deserved to be given glory.

As Handel included the Hallelujah chorus, he was trying to express how he imagined the view of heaven in front of him. This shows that part of the reason he wrote the Messiah musical piece was due to being inspired by divinity. Based on the religious oratorio, the Messiah piece offers several chorus reactions (Andersen, Francis, Edgar, Conrad, and Edward 257). The beginning statements, “Comfort ye my people”, “And the Glory of the Lord shall be revealed” displays the consequences of the incidents discussed in the recitative state.

Other recitative statements found in the Messiah music piece are direct quotations from the bible. For example, the statements, “For Behold, darkness shall cover the earth” and “For unto us a child is born” are complete quotations obtained from the biblical book of Isaiah (Andersen, Francis, Edgar, Conrad, and Edward 257). These statements attempt to clarify the person who gave light to people who were lost in darkness. From a general view, the chorus section in Messiah offers expressive commentaries, support, admiration and worship. In addition, this plays a significant role in the continuation of the oratorio subject.

The performance of the Messiah has been successfully accepted and enjoyed in various performances. There is the visualization of great effects experienced by a number of crowds as the Hallelujah choruses are being delivered. Some of the speculators are able to identify an improvement in the magnificence of the pitch, accuracy and harmony. However, speculators categorized as being naturally perfect felt that the incidents where extravagant passages have less frequency, broadness and great harmony is the prominent feature.

In the beginning chorus, “And the Glory of the Lord”, revealed the signal benefit acquired by the new temperament of female vocals (John 107). In addition, trebles that sometimes become barely audible during the practice sessions appear to have more clarity in the sound during the actual performance. In other statements within the Messiah piece, a great deal of rare instability is felt particularly in the unusual depth and strength of the identified tone.

Within the range of vocal types, the basses were prevented from getting off track through manipulating the instruments by casting off playing the piano in the beginning. This was the appropriate manner in expressing how the Messiah was affirmed in the appropriate exultation. The great burst in the performance when declaring the statement, “Wonderful Counselor” causes the speculators to fall in the moment of reflection and conviction of the message behind that utterance (John 107). The statement is made with the greatest loudness possible, which in turn causes the audience to feel great enthusiasm after witnessing such a performance. The conductor of the music piece was brilliant since he decided not to interrupt the performance.

The opening of the hallelujah chorus was perceived as being grand and magnificent by a majority of the audience. The utterance of the word, “Amen” by the various vocal groups was considered equal when being compared to the word, “hallelujah”. In addition, it consists of an appropriate ending to one of the greatest and interesting performances delivered in Messiah (John 107). After listening to the music piece, I became moved with the message of the piece because of how the performance was delivered.

The rhythm of the music piece that is brought across especially in the word hallelujah is tremendous. This is based on how its beginning note is lengthened and detonated at its conclusion. Another excellent feature in the hallelujah chorus is the fact that the most uncomplicated concepts have been used in ensuring its success. For example, when the phrases, “King of Kings” and “Lord of Lords” are sang repeatedly with increasing tones, the great effect of soul is felt.


















Works Cited

Andersen, Francis I, Edgar W. Conrad, and Edward G. Newing. Perspectives on Language and Text: Essays and Poems in Honor of Francis I. Andersen’s Sixtieth Birthday, July 28, 1985. Winona Lake, Ind: Eisenbrauns, 1987. Print.

Dwight, John S. Dwight’s Journal of Music: A Paper of Art and Literature. Boston: E.L. Balch, 1852. Internet resource.

Meyer, Leonard B. Style and Music: Theory, History, and Ideology. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1996. Print.

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