The Choir will be back singing at Sung Eucharist at All Saints Fulham Church on Sunday 25th March – Passion Sunday – after a week off for Mothering Sunday.
During the service, the Choir will be singing from the great oratario written by George Fredric Handel (1685-1759) – Messiah (HWV 56) – Surely he hath borne his griefs.
The title of this post – To God alone the glory – comes from the words Handel wrote at the end of his Messiah manuscript “SDG” — which means Soli Deo Gloria in Latin.
For its successful debut in Dublin, with the combined choirs of St Patrick’s and Christ Church cathedrals as the chorus, all proceeds from the perfromance were donated to local charities and hospitals for the mentally ill at the request of Jonathan Swift, Dean of St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
The words of the Messiah are taken from different sections of the King James Bible and were arranged by Charles Jennens, a friend of Handel’s and a keen patron of the arts. Jenner wrote the lyrics for five of Handel’s oratorios – Saul; Israel in Egypt; L’Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato; Belshazzar ; and Messiah.
Surely he hath borne his griefs is in Part II of the work. The oratorio’s structure follows the liturgical year: Part I corresponding with Advent, Christmas, and the life of Jesus; Part II with Lent, Easter, the Ascension, and Pentecost; and Part III with the end of the church year — dealing with the end of time.
Surely He hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows! He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon Him.
(Isaiah 53 : 4-5)
Staged version by Claus Guth
Susan Gritton, Soprano; Cornelia Horak, Soprano; Martin Pöllmann, Knabensopran
Bejun Mehta, Countertenor; Richard Croft, Tenor; Florian Boesch, Bass
Arnold Schönberg Chor
Dir. Jean-Christophe Spinosi
Wien, Theater an der Wien