Andreas Waczkat, G. F. Händel: The Messiah

How did Handel manage to create such a thrilling composition? What messages did it send to contemporary listeners? Where did Handel and his librettist, Charles Jennens, place their main points of focus?

Andreas Waczkat answers these and other questions in three stages. The first is devoted to the genesis of both the work and the libretto as well as its theological explosiveness for Handel's contemporaries. The second explores the text and music of the entire oratorio, movement by movement, in a way that makes it possible to look up specific passages. The third outlines the history of the work's posthumous reception and impact, which perpetuated the overwhelming triumph of its première.

Rounding off this introduction are practical notes on the many versions and editions of "The Messiah".

Author: Waczkat, Andreas
first published 2008
ISBN: 978-3-7618-2107-7
Pages: 146
with music examples

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