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Donald Macleod and his guest Ruth Smith tell the story of the man who had the idea for Messiah, Handel’s great collaborator Charles Jennens.

Donald Macleod and his guest Ruth Smith tell the story of the man behind Messiah: Handel’s great collaborator Charles Jennens.

In 1741 Handel packed his bags and left London for Dublin, where he spent nearly nine months writing and performing in the city. The main work that he premiered there was a new oratorio which proved to be one of the landmarks of his career. Across the week we hear the whole of Handel’s Messiah, uncover the secrets of its origins and dispel the myths that still surround it.

Today Donald and Ruth focus on the extraordinary life and character of Charles Jennens. Controversial, scholarly and passionately devoted to Handel’s music, it was Jennens, not Handel, who conceived the idea of Messiah and put together the libretto for Handel to set to music. The two men were very different and although their working relationship was often tense, their collaboration yielded a number of Handel’s finest works

Saul: Act I ‘How excellent Thy name’
The Sixteen
Harry Christophers, conductor

Athalia: Part I Scene 4 ‘Gloomy tyrants, we disdain’
Choir of New College, Oxford
The Academy of Ancient Music
Christopher Hogwood, director

Messiah: Part One (excerpts)
Christopher Purves, bass
Lucy Crowe, soprano
Le Concert d’Astree Choeur et Orchestre
Emmanuelle Haim, director

Messiah: Part One (Rejoice greatly)
Margaret Marshall, soprano
English Baroque Soloists
John Eliot Gardiner, conductor

Messiah: Part One (excerpts)
Clare Wilkinson, soprano
Dunedin Consort and Players
John Butt, conductor

L'Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato: As steals the morn
Jeremy Ovenden, tenor
Gillian Webster, soprano
Gabrieli Consort and Players
Paul McCreesh, director

Produced in Cardiff by Amelia Parker

3 days left to listen

59 minutes

Music Played

  • George Frideric Handel

    Saul: How excellent Thy name

    Choir: The Sixteen. Conductor: Harry Christophers.
    • Coro : COR16103.
    • Coro.
    • 6.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Athalia: Act I 'Gloomy tyrants, we disdain'

    Choir: Choir of New College Oxford. Ensemble: Academy of Ancient Music. Conductor: Christopher Hogwood.
    • L'Oiseau Lyre 4171262.
    • L'Oiseau Lyre.
    • 14.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Messiah: Part 1 (extracts)

    Singer: Christopher Purves. Singer: Lucy Crowe. Ensemble: Le Concert d’Astrée. Conductor: Emmanuelle Haïm.
    • erato 2564624055.
    • Erato.
    • 10.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Messiah: Part 1 'Rejoice greatly'

    Singer: Margaret Marshall. Orchestra: English Baroque Soloists. Conductor: Sir John Eliot Gardiner.
    • PHILIPS 434 297-2.
    • PHILIPS.
    • 16.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Messiah: Parts 1 and 2 (extracts)

    Singer: Clare Wilkinson. Ensemble: Dunedin Consort. Ensemble: Dunedin Players. Conductor: John Butt.
    • LINN RECORDS : LINN-CKD285.
    • LINN RECORDS.
    • 21.
  • George Frideric Handel

    L' Allegro, il Penseroso, ed il Moderato: As steals the morn

    Singer: Jeremy Ovenden. Singer: Gillian Webster. Ensemble: Gabrieli Consort. Ensemble: Gabrieli Players. Director: Paul McCreesh.
    • Signum SIGCD392.
    • Signum.
    • 21.

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