Young Ambassador Review: Handel's Messiah

 Fife Young Ambassador, Kelsa McDonald, describes the performance of Handel's Messiah, Thursday, January 2nd, at Glasgow Royal Concert Hall
On the 2nd of January I was lucky enough to see Handel’s Messiah performed at Glasgow Royal Concert Hall. Unlike the last concert I was at, the RSNO Chorus were present, and there were fewer musicians in the orchestra. There was a harpsichord and a chamber organ, which were particularly interesting for me as I learned about these instruments in school, but have never seen them on stage until now. The oratorio is a term that is taught in music classes but it’s certainly different seeing it performed live than hearing excerpts from it played on a CD player!
Composed by George Frederic Handel in 1741, the famous oratorio features recits and arias, choruses, including the Hallelujah Chorus, and a very brief pastoral symphony. The Messiah was conducted by Jonathan Cohen, who is described as one of “Britain’s finest young musicians”. The arias were performed by four soloists: a Soprano (Lydia Teuscher), a Countertenor (Tim Mead), a Tenor (Benjamin Hulett), and a Bass-Baritone (Neal Davies). As a singer myself, Lydia’s solos and duet with countertenor Tim Mead were particularly enjoyable. I find performing songs from the classical repertoire to be both challenging and rewarding, and watching a professional soprano has inspired me to continue learning these types of songs.
The RSNO Chorus has given me an idea of where I can continue singing as a member of a choir after I leave school. I’ve been a member of Beath’s Junior and Senior Choirs and enjoy singing as part of a group as much as I enjoy singing by myself.
The performance was uplifting and thoroughly enjoyable, and I’m certain that many people left feeling that. It was a wonderful way to start the new year!
Kelsa McDonald
Kelsa is part of the RSNO's Young Ambassador scheme, arranged by the Learning and Engagement Department. For more information, visit the RSNO website.
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