Handel’s Messiah Sing-In
Wednesday, December 19, 2018 7:30pm
David Geffen Hall, Lincoln Center
The annual Handel’s Messiah Sing-In at Lincoln Center was created as a celebration of choral singing and is today New York City’s most popular Holiday Season Community Music Event.
The Sing-In audience-chorus includes 3,000 singers of all backgrounds who come from throughout New York City, the greater New York/New Jersey/Connecticut area, across the United States and from countries around the world. It includes choral singers who sing in church and temple choirs, community choral organizations, high school, college and alumni choruses, people who formerly sang in choirs and many vocal music lovers who want to spend this one special evening singing and being surrounded by thousands of stereophonic voices, all singing Handel’s great choral masterpiece together.
The audience is the chorus—there is no chorus on stage. Rather than being seated in block SATB sections, the audience is seated “scrambled” so that attending choral groups and participating singers can sit with those whom they came with. Each participant brings a Messiah vocal score, and the sound of the massed mixed vocal parts in a tapestry of song throughout the hall is glorious.
There are 17 distinguished choral conductors, each of whom, in turn, conducts one chorus accompanied by the Sing-In organist at the Avery Fisher Hall organ. (Almost every well-known choral conductor in the Greater New York Area and beyond either participates or has participated in the Chorale’s annual Sing-In.) There also are 4 splendid professional soloists singing some of the best known solos and providing additional musical inspiration. Everett McCorvey, Artistic Director of the National Chorale and the Sing-In, is the host for the performance.
The Messiah Sing-In was conceived and developed in 1967 by Mr. Josman, the Chorale’s Board and a group of New York City choral conductors to celebrate choral singing on a community-wide basis. It was agreed by all that the best way to achieve this was to invite the choral singing community to gather one evening annually during a traditional singing time of the year and to sing a great choral work in a major concert hall under the shared leadership of a team of prominent choral conductors. As a result, the name Messiah Sing-In was created. The December Holiday Season was determined to be the best time of year for the event and Handel’s Messiah was selected as the great choral work with which most singers were familiar. Avery Fisher Hall, the exciting new concert hall in the City in the 1960’s was chosen to be the Sing-In location. The plan attracted the enthusiastic interest of New York’s choral community and the public, and the first Messiah Sing-In took place on Friday evening, December 13, 1967. It was an immediate success and has continued as a joyous, traditional choral community singing event every year since then.
The National Chorale has also presented Handel’s Messiah Sing-In in Boston, Minneapolis, Seattle, Denver, St. Louis, Rochester, NY, Phoenix, Tulsa, Lawrence, WI, the Saratoga Performing Arts Center Amphitheater and the Ocean Grove Auditorium, NJ.
This year is the eagerly looked forward to 51st Anniversary of the New York Messiah Sing-In.
2018 Messiah Sing-In Soloists
Brittany Renee Robinson, Soprano
Erica Koehring, Mezzo Soprano
Kirk Dougherty, Tenor
Brandon Coleman, Bass
2018 Messiah Sing-In Conductors
Joey Chancy, Broadway Conductor; Music Director; Independent Producer
Gregory Hopkins, Convent Avenue Baptist Church, NYC, Minister of Music; Harlem Opera Theater, Harlem Jubilee Singers, Cocolo Japanese Gospel Choir, Director
Darryl Jordan, Urban Assembly School for the Performing Arts, Music Director
Thomas Juneau, Juneau Vocal Alliance, Founder and Director; Summit Chorale, Artistic Director; St. Joseph’s University, Director of Choral Activities
Everett McCorvey, National Chorale, Artistic Director; University of Kentucky Opera Theater, Director; The American Spiritual Ensemble, Founder and Director
Kathryn Schneider, The New York City Bar Chorus, Music Director and Conductor
Michael Spierman, Bronx Opera, Founder and Director; Orchestra of the Bronx, Music Director
Jason Traum, Seton Hall, Director of Choral Activities; Ocean Grove Choir, Artistic Director; Mid-Atlantic Opera Company, Founder
2018 Messiah Organist
James Wetzel, Parish of Saint Vincent Ferrer and Saint Catherine of Sienna, New York City, Director and Organist
More Messiah Sing-In Conductors to follow…