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Comment: Clean cover, sharp corners, tight square binding, clean unmarked pages. There are no tears, creases or dog ears anywhere on the cover or the pages. Pages are intact and not marred by notes, underlining or highlighting. The spine is undamaged.
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Handel's Messiah: A Celebration Paperback – October 13, 1995

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Handel's Messiah: A Celebration + Messiah: The Gospel according to Handel's Oratorio + Handel's Messiah: Comfort for God's People (Calvin Institute of Christian Worship Liturgical Studies)
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Editorial Reviews

From Kirkus Reviews

A joyous but far from superficial paean to Handel's beloved masterwork. Only very occasionally does there appear a book about great music that doesn't wind up somehow diminishing the music itself. This is such a book. Luckett, the librarian at Magdalene College, Cambridge, modestly disclaims breaking any new scholarly ground, but the wealth of erudition that illuminates his description of the backdrop (musical and social), composition, and performance history of Messiah is truly impressive. All the familiar material is here, and a good deal more besides. Even the more quirky references (e.g., Dr. Johnson's patronizing remarks about Dublin, which heard the first performance in 1742) add to the superb texture. And the writing is beyond praise: Describing Handel's retreat from opera to the new form of oratorio, Luckett articulates the difficulties of saying farewell to ``...the irrational element, the pull of opera for its own ephemeral sake, the love affair that persists despite and because of the sweat and the greasepaint, the squalls and squalor, the cliques and cabals, for the sake of that one shudder of the realized dream.'' By the time that the aging, financially beleaguered master combines his earthy sense of rhythm and melody with a lifetime of musical learning to create his immortal treatment of the most sacred of religious subjects, the reader understands what makes ``classical'' music a living as well as lively art. Moreover, Luckett, going past Handel's death, provides a smart, wry history of emendations, ``improvements,'' and performances up almost to our own day. A book worthy of its subject and its subtitle, and one that deserves far more than a specialist readership. A Handelian home run. -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

A joyous but far from superficial paean to Handel's beloved masterwork. Only very occasionally does there appear a book about great music that doesn't wind up somehow diminishing the music itself. This is such a book. Luckett, the librarian at Magdalene College, Cambridge, modestly disclaims breaking any new scholarly ground, but the wealth of erudition that illuminates his description of the backdrop (musical and social), composition, and performance history of Messiah is truly impressive. All the familiar material is here, and a good deal more besides. Even the more quirky references (e.g., Dr. Johnson's patronizing remarks about Dublin, which heard the first performance in 1742) add to the superb texture. And the writing is beyond praise: Describing Handel's retreat from opera to the new form of oratorio, Luckett articulates the difficulties of saying farewell to ``...the irrational element, the pull of opera for its own ephemeral sake, the love affair that persists despite and because of the sweat and the greasepaint, the squalls and squalor, the cliques and cabals, for the sake of that one shudder of the realized dream.'' By the time that the aging, financially beleaguered master combines his earthy sense of rhythm and melody with a lifetime of musical learning to create his immortal treatment of the most sacred of religious subjects, the reader understands what makes ``classical'' music a living as well as lively art. Moreover, Luckett, going past Handel's death, provides a smart, wry history of emendations, ``improvements,'' and performances up almost to our own day. A book worthy of its subject and its subtitle, and one that deserves far more than a specialist readership. A Handelian home run. (Kirkus Reviews)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Mariner Books (October 13, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0156001381
  • ISBN-13: 978-0156001380
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,769,320 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Reader on October 30, 2010
Format: Paperback
I knew, of course, The Messiah to be magnificent but knew nothing about the background of the work other than it was written in an astounding short time. This book was just a feast for me. Beautifully written, understandable even to my limited musical vocabulary, illustrations so enhancing - this is a book to enjoy and one to gift to anyone who loves the world of music.
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Grover Smith on January 14, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The author writes as though for other PhD's and I think most would find this a very pretentious book. That said the author does give good information on the Messiah starting in chapter 3 (71 pages into the book)and on the librettist Jennens (the Arthur , organiser arranger of the lyrics) The lyrics came first . He goes into detail on the reasons for the sutile changes in the scripture quotes and why. This book is very informative if something of a struggle to stick with I would skip the first two chapters . Chapter 3 is the reason for the three stars and worth the price of the book if you are a fan of Messiah by Handel/Jennens
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Handel's Messiah: A Celebration
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