By Handel

Directed by Dr. David Ledgerwood

The Maranatha Baptist Bible College Fine Arts Department at will present the 40th Anniversary Celebration performance of Handel’s Messiah. The Christmas concert has been an annual event since the first presentation of Messiah in December of 1968, the year the college was founded. It has become a signature event in Watertown, with the gymnasium seats often filled by visitors from area churches and the community. The college’s three choirs—Chamber Singers, Madrigal Choir and Ladies’ Chorus—will join their 120 voices with the orchestra and five featured soloists to offer selections from all three portions of the piece. The excerpts to be performed include “And the Glory,” “For Unto Us,” “The Trumpet Shall Sound,” “O Thou That Tellest,” “Worthy is the Lamb,” and “Rejoice, Greatly, O Daughter of Zion.” The evening will conclude with “What Sweeter Music” by John Rutter. The featured soloists are Brad Smith, tenor; Dr. Dean Kurtz, bass; Carol Senn Ruffin, alto; Hayley McGrail, soprano; and Sherry Trainer, soprano.

It is requested that only children age 7 and over attend this event. No nursery will be provided.

Messiah was first performed in Dublin in 1742. The original libretto, composed by Charles Jennens, was set to music by Handel in just 24 days. The tradition of the audience rising during “The Hallelujah Chorus,” according to legend, dates back to King George II. Those attending the concert may wish to consider dinner at the college Dining Complex. The cost is $5.75 and the dining room is open from 5 p.m. to 6:30. Maranatha’s symphonic band will also give its annual Christmas chapel performance Dec. 12 at 9:20 a.m. at the gymnasium. For more information, call 920-261-9300.

Produced by Maranatha Baptist Bible College at Maranatha Baptist Bible College gymnasium, 745 W. Main St., Watertown, WI, 53094

Performances: December 11-12, 2008

Performance Times: 7 p.m.

Free admission. There is no charge for admission, but an offering will be taken.

Call 920-261-9300 for reservations or more information.

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