Sunday, December 12, 2010

Spontaenous (well, sort of) Handel

George Frederic seems to be popping up everywhere this December. In this video, Gerard Schwarz, Seattle Symphony conductor, directs a crowd of more than 600 in the flagship Nordstrom store. Singers on all three levels of the store participated.

This video has been making the rounds of facebook:

In my school days, we sang selections from The Messiah in our Christmas concert, and once you were a member of the a cappella choir, you were granted lifetime rights to join the latest crop of junior and senior high-school singers in the annual Messiah performance. Several of my sisters and I did this for a few years -- it was a great musical reunion. I suppose this tradition lasted as long as that teacher did -- a much-beloved Mr. McManus -- dashingly handsome, irrepressibly cheerful, and the best music teacher I ever had. You couldn't pass his class without being able to sight read -- solo -- in front of the class. He was so beloved that in my four years as his student, I never saw a single student fail to thrive.

I also had a tradition of putting on my Messiah records when I was carving my Halloween pumpkins. It got a little eerie, especially when I was done with the knife and lit the candle. Where, exactly, was that music coming from?!


  1. Interesting that you posted the second video T. Friends who were here for the weekend work with the company that manages that particular shopping mall (it's about ten minutes from where we live) and we were talking about how that particular flash mob came about over dinner last night!
    I too had the immense fortune to sing the Hallelujah chorus with the Southampton City Youth Choir the Christmas after my dad still gives me goosebumps when I remember that experience.

  2. Jacqueline, the synchronicity which occurs often out here in cyber-land never fails to astound me.

    And yes, it is immense fortune to have to opportunity to sing Handel with a group. I miss it. My voice is shot. But I can still listen to it (and sing to it in private!).

  3. I dreamed last night we did this at yoga.