Portrait of Handel, painted by Thomas Hudson in 1741. (Image credit: public domain)
HandelYesbaroque musicHe is one of the three great masters of the Baroque together with Bach and Vivaldi. His representative works “Water Music”, “Royal Fireworks” and “Messiah” are still popular today.
gifted musical prodigy
Handel (1685-1759) was born in Germany. His father was a surgeon and barber. His father always wanted Handel to become a lawyer, so he always opposed Handel to learn any musical instrument.
However, Handel showed excellent musical talent since he was a child. He went to the court of the Duke of Saxony with his father when he was 7 years old. The Duke of Adolf in the court was deeply moved by the sound of Handel’s playing and persuaded Handel’s father. Let Handel receive an orthodox musical education.
At the age of 18, although Handel followed his father’s last wish to go to college to study law, he was still interested in music creation. He was gifted with extraordinary talent. Before the age of 30, he became a composer among the stars and the moon. He was appreciated by Queen Anne and George I successively, and was hired as the music director of the palace church. In addition to court music, he also wrote a large number of operas. Whenever a new play was staged, George I and the Queen would always visit the theater to watch it, which made Handel’s fame reach its peak.
Apocalypse God Helps Create “Messiah”
In 1727, George I died. Due to the loss of a strong fan, Handel’s opera house was unable to make ends meet and was on the verge of bankruptcy. In the end, his troupe had to be disbanded. The more fatal blow was that Handel suddenly suffered a stroke and hemiplegia. Hemiplegia. After several months of recuperation, the 57-year-old Handel miraculously stood up. In order to thank God for his gift, he decided to integrate his gratitude to God into every note of “Messiah”.
Handel completed three works of “Messiah” with 53 chapters, 57 parts, and 354 pages of the score, and the whole composition is magnificent, smooth and lively. Even he was surprised by this work, as if he was in a sleep. As if descending upon him, he said gratefully, “God helped me!”
Internationally renowned artistic achievement
Handel wrote a large number of vocal and orchestral works, especially operas, which earned him a great reputation all over Europe; he was also a world-renowned master of the organ, rivaled only by Bach at the time.
Among the many works, “Messiah” is an important driving force for Handel’s international fame. This work starts two conventions:
First, it is said that King George II of England was present at the time. When he heard the second part of the chorus “Hallelujah”, he was very moved. In order to express his respect, he stood up and listened to the chorus. Since then, it has become a habit that every time the performance of “Messiah” and the singing of the chorus “Hallelujah”, the audience will involuntarily stand up and listen.
The second is that “Messiah” is played every year at Westminster Abbey.
Source: see China Weekly
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