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December 5, 2014 at 6:00 AM

Let the ‘Messiah’ season begin

Those early-music pros, Tafelmusik, are all about the "Messiah." /Gary Beechey

“Herr Handel” is in the cast of Tafelmusik’s  heralded “Messiah” concerts in Toronto./Gary Beechey

We just had snow, Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Giving Tuesday.

It’s now time, then, for Messiah December. Here are some places to enjoy Handel’s masterpiece:

–Inverse Opera is first out of the gate, with director Robert Scherzer at the helm of a staged concert version starring 12 regional performers. It’s a simple approach, Scherzer says, with actors in street clothes and off-book. Dec. 5-20, Taproot Theatre.

–Federal Way Symphony invites patrons to bring their own scores and sing along to its “Messiah,” joining soloists Heidi Vanderford, Megan Chenovick, Tim Janecke, Ryan Bede and Brittney McClary, with the Breath of Aire Choir. It’s Dec. 5 at Des Moines Beach Park Events Center.

–Bluegrassy types will enjoy the Mandolin “Messiah,” presented by the Seattle Mandolin Orchestra, which reminds us that yes indeedy, Handel was familiar with the stringed instrument. Dec. 13 at Epiphany Parish, and Dec. 14, Broadway Performance Hall, both Seattle.

–St. John Lutheran Church also invites audience participation in its 25th annual Sing/Play-Along concerts, Dec. 13-14 at 5515 Phinney Ave. N., Seattle.

–Seattle Symphony unleashes its three-night “Messiah” with guest conductor Cristian Macelaru, conductor in residence of the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Seattle Symphony Chorale and soloists Heidi Grant Murphy, Peabody Southwell, Ross Hauck and Tyler Duncan. Dec. 19-21, Benaroya Hall.

–Orchestra Seattle/Seattle Chamber Singers are now in their fourth decade of presenting the complete “Messiah.” Join them and music director Clinton Smith Dec. 21 at First Free Methodist Church, Seattle.

–Keep the holiday cheer going with University Unitarian Church’s annual Sing and Play Along “Messiah,” Dec. 26 at University Unitarian Church on 35th Avenue. Bring a score if you have one.

–Squeeze a Sing/Play Along “Messiah” into 2014 with this one with the Northwest Chorale at Lake City Presbyterian Church on Dec. 30; bring a score if you have one; there will be some to share.

Comments | More in Arts news | Topics: classical music, Handel, holiday

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