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Messiah

220px-hallelujah-score-1741.jpgMessiah (HWV 56) is an English-language oratorio composed in 1741 by George Frideric Handel.  The text is from the King James Bible and from the version of the Psalms included with the Book of Common Prayer. It was first performed in Dublin on 13 April 1742 and received its London premiere nearly a year later. After an initially modest public reception, the oratorio gained in popularity, eventually becoming one of the best-known and most frequently performed choral works in Western music.

Although its structure resembles that of opera, Messiah is not in dramatic form; there are no impersonations of characters and no direct speech. Instead, the text is an extended reflection on Jesus Christ as Messiah. The text begins in Part I with prophecies by Isaiah and others, and moves to the annunciation to the shepherds, the only "scene" taken from the Gospels. In Part II, Handel concentrates on the Passion and ends with the "Hallelujah" chorus. In Part III he covers the resurrection of the dead and Christ's glorification in heaven.

Handel wrote Messiah for modest vocal and instrumental forces, with optional settings for many of the individual numbers. In the years after his death, the work was adapted for performance on a much larger scale, with giant orchestras and choirs. In other efforts to update it, its orchestration was revised and amplified by (among others) Mozart. In the late 20th and early 21st centuries the trend has been towards reproducing a greater fidelity to Handel's original intentions, although "big Messiah" productions continue to be mounted. Our Messiah recordings, available here, aim toward more historically accurate performances done with period instruments.

The UniqueTracks Stock Music Library is able to license these recordings for many different media uses.  You can configure your license right here on this website by choosing your usage type from the drop-down box when you click the "License/Buy this Track" link.

Streaming audition files include an audio 'watermark' and are mono, 16 bit, 128kbps .mp3 files.
The actual Master files are delivered to you with no watermark as stereo .wav files in CD quality 44.1kHz, 16 bit format.
  • Messiah - Hallelujah (Chorus)

  • Messiah - And He Shall Purify (The Sons Of Levi)

  • Messiah - For Unto Us A Child Is Born (Chorus)

  • Messiah - And The Glory Of The Lord Shall Be Revealed

  • Messiah - Comfort Ye My People

  • Messiah - He Shall Feed His Flock Like A Shepherd

  • Messiah - Amen (Chorus)

  • Messiah - Ev'ry Valley Shall Be Exalted (Tenor solo)

  • Messiah - Symphony (Grave - Allegro Moderato)

  • Messiah - Thus Saith The Lord, The Lord Of Hosts

  • Messiah - But Who May Abide The Day Of His Coming

  • Messiah - O Thou That Tellest Good Tidings To Zion

  • Messiah - For Behold, Darkness Shall Cover The Earth

  • Messiah - The People That Walked In Darkness

  • Messiah - Pifa (Pastoral Symphony)

  • Messiah - And Lo, The Angel Of The Lord

  • Messiah - And Suddenly There Was With The Angel

  • Messiah - Glory To God In The Highest

  • Messiah - Rejoice Greatly, O Daughter Of Zion

  • Messiah - His Yoke Is Easy, And His Burthen Is Light

  • Messiah - Behold The Lamb Of God (Chorus)

  • Messiah - He Was Despised And Rejected Of Men

  • Messiah - Surely He Hath Borne Our Griefs (Chorus)

  • Messiah - And With His Stripes We Are Healed (Chorus)

  • Messiah - All We Like Sheep Have Gone Astray (Chorus)

  • Messiah - All They That See Him Laugh (Tenor)

  • Messiah - He Trusted In God That He Would Deliver Him

  • Messiah - Thy Rebuke Hath Broken His Heart

  • Messiah - Behold, And See If There Be Any Sorrow

  • Messiah - He Was Cut Off Out Of The Land...