Chamber Choir performs Messiah

The Chamber Choir from here will perform Handel’s Messiah on Dec. 20 at the River Run Centre.
The choir is joined by an orchestra playing on period instruments and four guest Canadian soloists: soprano Meredith Hall; alto Christina Stel­ma­covich, tenor Neal Banerjee, and bass John Paul Decosse.
“The message of Handel’s Messiah contains many of the universal truths that we hold dear – new beginnings, hope for a better future, demands for social justice, a sense of redemption” said conductor Gerald Neufeld. “The music … gives expression to those hopes for new beginnings with peace and good will at a time when there is so much hopelessness and strife in our world.”
Guelph audiences have thrilled to Messiah as a Christmas tradition for decades and responded enthusiastically with a standing ovation in 2007.
Many would be surprised at the extraordinary behaviour of other concert-goers over the ages. In a pre-concert talk, Dr Ernest Redekop from the Uni­versity of Western Ontario will speak about audiences’ re­actions to Messiah from Handel’s time to now, including ways in which audiences sat or stood, cheered, or booed, how they dressed up (or did not), with stylistic preferences, in­cluding the experience he had with an audience in Kunming, China, in 1999.
The talk called From swords to cell phones: how some audiences have reacted to Messiah, will take place before the concert from 6:45 to 7:30pm, and all ticket holders are welcome.
The 40-voice Guelph Cham­ber Choir is largely ama­teur singers.
The choir’s 29th season continues with a work­shop and concert on Afro-centric music on March 7, and a performance of Bach’s St Matthew Passion on April 11, 2009. 
Tickets to Messiah are $30 for adults or four for $100; students $10, and $5 eyeGO: call the River Run Centre at 519-763-3000 or 1-877 520-2408, or go online at www.­river­
For more information on the Guelph Chamber Choir call 519 836-5103 or visit