Following its recent successful sell-out Mozart concert featuring celebrated violinist Nicola Benedetti, the 180-strong Harrogate Choral Society is continuing its rehearsals for what is arguably the nation’s most popular oratorio, thanks in part to the one of the most famous pieces of music ever written, the exuberant Hallelujah chorus.
Tony Latter, chairman of the Harrogate Choral Society, says of the work’s enduring appeal:
Audiences and choral societies alike are uplifted by the Messiah’s combination of epic story-telling and exquisitely beautiful music. We all think we know it well, but no two performances are the same and we see something new in it each time, making it a musical experience that is enjoyable and refreshing every time for everyone.
The concert boasts a fine group of soloists, including Harrogate’s own, counter tenor Robert Ogden. Described in 2007 by Opera Magazine as “a rare and exciting find”, he performs in major venues across the world and last year became artistic director of the Northern Aldborough Festival.
Counter tenor, Robert Ogden
He is joined by soprano Elizabeth Cragg and the Australian baritone Duncan Rock, both of whom have performed to much acclaim with the Harrogate Choral Society in the past. The tenor is a newcomer to Harrogate, Ben Thapa, who is a former member of X Factor runner-up G4 and whose assured solo performances are already impressing audiences across the country.
The orchestra is the Manchester Camerata, an ensemble of international quality, who have a longstanding and highly successful association with the Harrogate Choral Society.
The concert will be conducted by the Society’s Music Director, Andrew Padmore, whose previous performances of Messiah have been hailed as “outstanding triumphs”.
You can find more details about this and other Harrogate Choral Society concerts, including its support of the Family Christmas Concert at the Harrogate International Centre on 17 December, at www.harrogatechoral.org.uk
The Messiah concert starts at 7.30pm on Saturday 3 December 2011 at The Royal Hall, Harrogate. Tickets (£17-£24) are available from the Theatre Box Office on 01423 502116 or online at www.harrogatetheatre.co.uk