Messiah in full! Performed by Portsmouth Festival Choir

Andrew Cleary
Andrew Cleary
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It is very unusual to perform the full Messiah – possibly insane!

Not our words but those of Portsmouth Festival Choir musical director Andrew Cleary.

Yet the full Messiah is exactly what he and the choir will present in Portsmouth Anglican Cathedral on Saturday, March 26 (7.30pm).

Andrew says: ‘As it’s quite rare, it’s all the more reason for people to come to our concert.

‘There won’t be many other chances like this.’

Handel originally wrote Messiah, featuring the famous Hallelujah Chorus, as a three-act theatre entertainment rather than a concert piece, so it is as much a dramatic work as a straight oratorio, Andrew says.

‘Its enduring popularity reflects the sheer richness and variety of the music, as well as the way it captures universal emotions such as pathos, serenity and joy.

‘It is also a deeply satisfying work to perform for seasoned professionals and enthusiastic amateurs alike.’

The solo team will be led by soprano Katharine Hawnt, who has a growing reputation in early music across Europe.

· Tickets: (01420) 489316,, or from the bookshop in the cathedral.