Prairie Performances

Judas Maccabeus

George Frideric Handel by Balthasar Denner

George Frideric Handel by Balthasar Denner Wikimedia Commons

On this week's Prairie Performances, Friday at 7 pm on WILL-FM 90.9, enjoy Handel's Judas Maccabeus, written in 1746, four years after "Messiah." The piece is one of a series of Handel's works in the oratorio form after his career as a composer of Italian opera in London had petered out by the end of the 1730s. Its subject is drawn from the Apocrypha of the Bible (First Book of the Maccabees) and the historian Josephus.

The oratorio celebrates the exploits of Judas Maccabeus, who conquered the Syrians, and consecrated the temple in Jerusalem in 165 B.C. after its profanation, and thus inspired the festival of "Hannukah."

Judas Maccabeus (5/19/13)

Chet Alwes, conductor 

Ricardo Herrera, baritone, as Simon

Lee Steiner, tenor, as Judas

Christopher Holman, counter tenor, as Israelite Man

Kathy Linger, soprano

Stephen L. Larson. as Messenger

Audrey Vallance

Central Illinois Children's Chorus, Andrea Solyea, dir.

The instrumentalists of BACH

Amy Flores, cello

Jonathan Young, organ

Tracy Parish and Jeremy McBain, trumpets

William Moersch, tympani

Handel | Judas Maccabeus