Painting the Whole Picture: Handel at his Best

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In this show, Kent explores the physical and painterly beauty of the choral sound world. And there's arguably no greater master of painting a picture with music than George Frideric Handel.

Yup, you know Messiah; you've probably overdosed on it at this point. But Israel in Egypt, while not as famous as Messiah, has perhaps the most powerful examples of word painting in all of Handel's works. Listen to the buzzing of the violins as they onomatopoetically describe the flies, lice, and the rest of the famous Egyptian plagues...

Later, the full dark choral texture creates a visceral depiction of the darkness that enveloped Egypt, and finally the orchestra undulates with the sound of the waves of the Red Sea.

Also on the program, Kent describes how he got locked inside Westminster Abbey with Handel's grave just under him. Spooky!

Finally, an exploration of the text of the Sanctus: you'll hear very different settings of this deeply spiritual text, from Machaut to Duruflé and of course, J.S. Bach.