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Deborah: Handel the Charming Brute and the Birth of Oratorio
Saturday 7 May 2005 13:00-14:00 (Radio 3)
In 1733 Handel started work on his first purpose-written Oratorio, Deborah. The piece was not popular with the audiences of the time, partly due to Handel's doubling of ticket prices. In addition to the ignominy of an unsuccessful work, the composer was in severe financial difficulty, his partnership with the impresario Heidegger was collapsing, he was being constantly lambasted by the King's son: the then Prince of Wales and a certain cartoon was doing the rounds showing Handel as a greedy hog. Catherine Bott explores Deborah, and Handel's corresponding misfortunes.
Excerpts taken from EBU recording at Handel Festival Gottingen 2004