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Thread: Handel's Messiah Organ Accompaniment

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    Handel's Messiah Organ Accompaniment

    Hi all,

    We're doing the Christmas part of the Messiah for our winter concert. I've done the thing a few times, but have never been entriely happy with the arrangement of the accompaniment.

    I've tended to use the Prout, but it can be rather hard to read - failing eyesight? Do any of you have a particular favourite that suites the organ and is not simply a case of 'throw all the notes of the orchestra on to two staves'?

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    Admiral of Fugues Contratrombone64's Avatar
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    Hi there QFE it's "Messiah" not "the Messiah" ;-) and you have no option but playing an orchestral reduction I'm afraid though there seems to be some discussion on which edition is the best (I own Novello). There is, of course, a continuo part which is sometimes played on a chamber organ (or harpsichord) but using this would not give any of the bits that the choir and soloists need as queues for their singing (think the trumpet part in The Trumpet Shall Sound. A friend of mine is a Handel expert, I'll phone him later and see what he knows and get back to you on this thread.
    I'm not an atheist and I don't think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many different languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangement of the books but doesn't know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God.
    —Albert Einstein.

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    Vice Admiral Virtuoso wljmrbill's Avatar
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    I use G. Schirmer's Edition for four-part chorus of mixed voices, saprano,alto,tenor,bass soli and piano ( I just transcribe as I play just like any other piano part to organ} althought the last time I performed it was with an orchestra as well as organ:but still used the same edition. They do have an ORGAN SCORE Available also. I order my last copy from Sheetmusicplus.com.. Enjoy playing this: I know I always enjoy playing this composition

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    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
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    I have the organ score trascription that was done by Warren Hutton & Mary Lou Robinson. This is one of the best, imho, editions for the organist, complete with pedaling and registration suggestions.
    Kh ~~.
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    Amateur musicians practice until they get it right ...
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    Admiral of Fugues Contratrombone64's Avatar
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    Lars - looks pricey - is it still in copyright?
    I'm not an atheist and I don't think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many different languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangement of the books but doesn't know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God.
    —Albert Einstein.

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    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
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    Hi David,

    Yes - still copyrighted by Schirmer publishing. I think I paid about $42 (USD) for it plus $12 for shipping. All the US suppliers were out of stock at the time I needed it last year ... apparently this UK store is where all the US stores obtain this from anyway, so I basically cut out the middle-man.
    Kh ~~.
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    Amateur musicians practice until they get it right ...
    Pro
    fessional musicians practice until they can't get it wrong ...


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    Thanks for the advice guys,

    The Warren Hutton & Mary Lou Robinson sounds just the ticket: 'For the time it will save in preparing for performance, this edition is an excellent investment.'

    Contra, you're right about the 'The', it's one of those things that we (all?) tend to say, I guess as a measure of its importance. I'll endevour to correct any reference to the 'The' by the choir, but I suspect it could be a losing battle, like getting people to sing 'Cwm Rhondda' correctly :-)

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    Vice Admiral Virtuoso wljmrbill's Avatar
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    according to ..... it is" Missiah "if used with Handel's name .. it is "The Messiah" if used as an oratorio...... note on Schirmer's editions:
    The Messiah
    An Oratorio
    4 part etc, etc
    by
    G. F. Handel

    just a thought on technique phrasing. I notice this same appraoch on other compositions/publications

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    Admiral of Fugues Contratrombone64's Avatar
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    According to whom?
    I'm not an atheist and I don't think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many different languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangement of the books but doesn't know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God.
    —Albert Einstein.

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    Oooo, a hornet's nest ;-) My own additional sixpence worth on the subject on thinking about it would be that the 'The' comes from the Biblical point of view that Christ was 'The' Messiah not just one of the many other 'Brians' at the time.

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    Vice Admiral Virtuoso wljmrbill's Avatar
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    am referring to the use of the english language and use of articles or adjective case.

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    Admiral of Fugues Contratrombone64's Avatar
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    So by that way of thinking Mendelssohn's Elijah should probably be called "The Elijah"? ;-)
    I'm not an atheist and I don't think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many different languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangement of the books but doesn't know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God.
    —Albert Einstein.

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    Vice Admiral Virtuoso wljmrbill's Avatar
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    I believe with Mendelssohn"s music his name appears first and then the work in Schirmers editions.

    Mendelssohn
    op 64
    Concerto in F As an example
    for violin

    What I am referring to is the format for the covers and title pages as well as proper wording for use. The Elijah by Mendelssohn or Mendelssohn's Elijah. Sorry for confusion.

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