Ensemble Matheus

This Wednesday’s Carnegie Hall Live presents Ensemble Matheus, performing three Baroque (and rival!) composers: Antonio Vivaldi, George Frederic Handel and the lesser known Nicola Antonio Porpora.

Performers
Ensemble Matheus
Jean-Christophe Spinosi, Director and Violin
Veronica Cangemi, Soprano
Laurence Paugam, Violin
Claire-Lise Démettre, Cello
Jérôme Pernoo, Cello

Program
HANDEL Overture to Serse
HANDEL “Frondi tenere” from Serse
HANDEL “Ombra mai fù” from Serse
VIVALDI “Gelosia” from Ottone in Villa
VIVALDI Concerto in D Minor for Two Violins, Cello, Strings, and Continuo from L’estro armonico, Op. 3, No. 11
VIVALDI “Zeffiretti che sussurate” from Ercole su’l Termodonte
VIVALDI Concerto in G Minor for Two Cellos, Strings, and Continuo, RV 531
VIVALDI “Se mai senti” from Catone in Utica
PORPORA Concerto in G Major for Cello
VIVALDI “Siam navi all’onde algenti” from L’Olimpiade

Photo Credit: Edouard Brane

Ten Facts about Handel’s Messiah

Along with The Nutcracker, it’s the most performed classical composition during the Holidays. Here are ten facts about G.F. Handel’s oratorio Messiah (not The Messiah).

1. The music was composed in about 24 days, though Handel recycled other works for Messiah.

2. 259: The number of pages in the final manuscript (not without errors and signs of haste).

3. We often hear huge choirs perform Messiah, but at the premiere there were a whopping 32.

4. The premiere was a benefit concert for several charities, including a prison for debtors and a children’s hospital. In fact, 142 prisoners were released because of the donations raised at the premiere.

5. Messiah should really be performed during Lent. It’s premiere took place on April 13, 1742.

6. Mozart first heard Messiah in 1777 in Mannheim. Excerpts were performed in the US in 1770.

7. Handel’s original orchestration only called for strings and continuo, and very little trumpet and timpani.

8. In 1865, Boston held a performance that included over 600 in the chorus.

9. Sir Henry Wood used 3500 singers in the first recording of Messiah in 1926 for Columbia.

10. Sir Thomas Beecham recorded the first complete performance in 1928.

Here our broadcast of Messiah, in its entirety, from Trinity Church, December 24th at 1pm.