Handel’s ‘Messiah’ coming to Henderson

Choir Singing Messiah

One of the greatest chorale works is coming to Rusk County, for one afternoon only…

Henderson Lions Club is hosting a performance of Handel’s “Messiah” at 2:30 p.m. Dec. 2 at First Baptist Church. Dr. Will Andress of Shreveport will serve as conductor. Andress served 33 years as director of the Centenary College choir.

Featured soloists include soprano Blair Doerge of Houston, alto Missy Wise of Shreveport and tenor William Parsons of Shreveport. Henderson native Preston Orr, who is completing work on his master’s degree in voice and opera at Indiana University, is the baritone soloist.

“I’m looking forward to this concert,” Henderson Lions Club member Travis Orr said earlier this month. Orr is coordinating much of the planning for the concert. “It will be the first time Henderson has heard Messiah in 20-something years.”

There was one final rehearsal – at 10 a.m. Saturday – with the orchestra, Orr said.

George Handel wrote “Messiah” in 24 days, The oratorio debuted in Dublin, Ireland, in 1742. (An oratorio is similar to an opera, while the latter is considered musical theater while the former is a concert piece.)

Orr said all proceeds from that first performance in Dublin went to charities in that city. Proceeds from the performance Sunday in Henderson will benefit Lions Club charities.

“This is a great way to start off the holiday season,” Orr said.

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