How Handel’s Messiah Became A Christmas Classic

A portrait of George Frideric Handel, presenting his Water Music to King George I.
A portrait of George Frideric Handel, presenting his Water Music to King George I.
A portrait of George Frideric Handel, presenting his Water Music to King George I.
A portrait of George Frideric Handel, presenting his Water Music to King George I.

How Handel’s Messiah Became A Christmas Classic

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It’s December, so you’re probably starting to hear Christmas music everywhere. “Jingle Bells,” “Winter Wonderland,” “Baby It’s Cold Outside” are all favorites, but what about Handel’s “Messiah”?

The “Messiah” was originally written in 1741 to celebrate Easter, but now thousands of orchestras around the world perform it every year at Christmas time.

In Chicago alone, you can go see the Chicago Symphony’s “Messiah,” the do-it-yourself “Messiah,” and even the Jazz Gospel “Messiah” at the Auditorium Theatre.

Morning Shift discusses the backstory of the oratorio and explains how it got so famous.

GUEST: Lindsey Adams, mezzo-soprano soloist, music teacher