October 30th, 2020

Symphony hosts second night of ‘Messiah’

By Bobinec, Greg on December 16, 2019.

Herald photo by Greg Bobinec
Chinook Chamber singer Jason Ragan joins the Lethbridge Symphony in one of the opening songs in part of the Messiah performance Sunday evening at Southminster United Church. @GBobinecHerald

Greg Bobinec

Lethbridge Herald


The Lethbridge symphony is back for another two-day show of the famous oratorio, Messiah, with the finale taking place tonight at 7:30 p.m. The heartwarming tradition continues when the Christmas classic returns to Southminster United Church.

A powerhouse of music and vocals will take the stage under the direction of guest conductor Marvin Dueck, featuring Chinook Chamber Singers and soloists Janet Youngdahl, Erinn Evdokimoff-Roberts, Jason Ragan, and Adam Brousseau.

“This is going to be a lot like Handel’s version of Messiah,” says Glenn Klassen, music director of the Lethbridge Symphony.

“The premiere performance of Messiah featured a chorus of 32 singers and a similarly sized orchestra. It was intended to be a brilliant and huge work, presented by a small but powerful group of performers, and the Lethbridge Symphony’s forces for this year’s concerts are just want Handel had in mind.”

Messiah is a series of reflections of Jesus as saviour of humanity, divided into three distinct sections: the prophecies and the annunciation of Jesus and their fulfillment in his birth, the Passion story, and Jesus’ glorification in heaven and resurrection of the dead. The first part of Messiah is often dubbed “Christmas” due to its focus on the birth of Jesus as audiences can gain the sense of celebration throughout the music.

“This truly is a wonderful and special classic. It has always been a favourite in the community and we’re very excited to be presenting such an authentic version,” says Melanie Gattiker, executive director.

“We’re also really pleased to be doing Toonies for Turkeys again this year, in support of the Lethbridge and Interfaith Foodbanks. We’ll be doing a collection during intermission and at the end of the performances, with all proceeds going to help feed the less fortunate.”

Community members taking in the show are encouraged to bring some spare change or a couple of bills to support local families in need through the Toonies for Turkeys program. All of the funds raised through the two evenings will assist the Interfaith Food Bank and Lethbridge Food Bank and go towards food purchases this Christmas, turkeys in particular.

“It is wonderful to see local agencies supporting our cause,” says Danielle McIntyre, executive director with Interfaith Food Bank. “It is a challenge for many of our local charities and non-profit societies just to fulfill our own mandates and objectives. It is so nice to see the support from one local group to another. This is a classic example of the spirit of generosity in our community. Our Christmas Hope partnership involved five agencies working together to jointly serve 2,000 adults and 4,000 children this Christmas.”

Tickets are available online any time at lethbridgesymphony.org, including printable and digital tickets available, and by calling the Symphony Box Office at 403-328-6808 ext. 101. Prices range from $25-$75, with generous youth discounts available. Tickets for the Messiah show this evening are still available.

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