DO-IT-YOURSELF MESSIAH FAQ’s
What is Handel’s Messiah?
Written in 1741, Messiah is George Frideric Handel’s best-known oratorio and presents the scriptural account of the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth. Though written by Handel for the Easter season, Messiah has become more commonly performed as a Christmas-time event. Typically, Messiah is performed in a concert venue by professional musicians, soloists, and a chorus.
What is the Do-It-Yourself Messiah?
What makes the Do-It-Yourself Messiah different from other productions of Messiah?
Can I still attend if I have no ticket for the event?
You need a ticket to enter the Harris Theater. In past years, individuals wishing to participate who were unable to obtain a ticket before the event were invited to wait in a “stand-by” line until shortly before show time. Tickets returned to the facility by ticket-holders unable to attend the event (“turn-back tickets”) were provided to those waiting in line on a first-come, first served basis. In cases where empty seats were still available as the event was about to start, the facility offers “Rush tickets” to fill those open seats. They are “cash only” tickets – no credit card purchases – and they cost $15. No guarantees of seating can be made for those who cannot obtain a ticket before show time, though in the past all who wanted to participate have been accommodated. If you arrive at the Harris Theater without a ticket for the event, ask the staff at the theater to direct you to the standby area for those without a ticket.
Can anyone attend the Do-It-Yourself Messiah?
Do I need to read music to sing in the Do-It-Yourself Messiah?
Are there qualifications to participate in the Do-It-Yourself Messiah?
What do I need in order to prepare for the Do-It-Yourself Messiah?
Which part of the Messiah score should I plan to sing?
How is the audience/chorus seated at the Do-It-Yourself Messiah?
Is the Do-It-Yourself Messiah a lot of fun?
Do I need to know all the music in the Messiah score to participate?
No. The chorus (the audience, in this case) is only responsible for singing the choruses from Messiah. Portions of the score marked as ‘Recitative’ or ‘Air’ are sung from the stage by the professional soloists. For reasons of brevity (and due to some choral meltdowns in past years), the conductor may choose to exclude certain choruses from the Do-It-Yourself Messiah. In the past few years, the following choruses have been excluded:
He Trusted in God
Let All the Angels of God
The Lord Gave the Word
Their Sound is Gone Out
Let Us Break their Bonds Asunder
But Thanks Be to God
How do I get to the Harris Theater?
The Harris Theater for Music and Dance is located at 205 E. Randolph Drive at the north end of Millennium Park in downtown Chicago. Driving directions to local parking and directions using Metra and CTA are available at the Harris Theater website.