Sedalia’s annual free Christmas event Handel’s “Messiah” will be presented Sunday afternoon at Sacred Heart Catholic Church featuring approximately 15 choruses and several solo pieces.
The event is sponsored by the Sedalia Symphony Society.
“It is the Sedalia Symphony Society’s gift (to Sedalia),” Director Sandy Cordes said Thursday.
Cordes added that there are 55 or 56 people participating in the choir.
“A few are from the Sedalia Chorale, but most of them are people who sing in their church choirs or just like to sing,” she added. “There’s some new people I’ve never had before, it’s a good sign.”
The singers are also multi-generational.
“I noticed that I had a granddaughter and a grandfather singing,” she said. “I noticed that I had a couple of mother/daughters singing, and they have made it a family thing. They have carried that on to their children and their grandchildren. When you direct it, it kind of inspires you that they are that dedicated.”
Along with the singers, members of the symphony strings will perform.
“They also have a string orchestra, two first violins, two second violins, two violas, two cellos,” Cordes said. “Then we have a bassoon player, Dr. William Decker. Last year we added a trumpet because there’s a solo called the ‘Trumpet Shall Sound.’”
They will retain the trumpet, played by Judge Robert Koffman, for this year’s performance.
A few of the performers are new this year and Cordes said although she lost two tenors, it’s all turned out well.
“I have some very talented soloists and a couple of them are new,” she added.
Most of the pieces for Sunday’s event are taken from the Christmas portion of the “Messiah.”
“But, we do go into the third portion, which is the crucifixion and we do the last three pieces …” Cordes said. “Then we always end our concert with the ‘Halleujah’ chorus. We always do it at the end and invite audience members to sing it.”
Cordes is excited about directing the performance at Sacred Heart.
“The setting is beautiful, the setting is breathtaking,” she added. “It’s very difficult for me, because of the problem with the organ up in the balcony. We have somebody up in the balcony that is conducting the organist. It’s quite a feat here, it takes a village to raise a child, it takes a village to do the ‘Messiah’ in Sedalia, when you do it at Sacred Heart. But, it’s so beautiful, everybody loves it there. The choir just sounds glorious in there.”
Cordes added that she was thankful for Symphony Conductor Gwen Kappelman.
“… Her role in preparing the strings, she’s just does a phenomenal job,” Cordes said. “Cheryl McCollester behind the piano is spectacular and Debbie Mueller is the organist, I think this is her 27th year. She’s spectacular too, I mean the best.”
Cordes noted that last time the event was hosted at Sacred Heart, the church filled up quickly. She suggested people come early to get a seat.
Handel’s “Messiah,” sponsored by the Sedalia Symphony Society, will be presented at 3 p.m. Sunday at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 421 W. Third St. The event is free and open to the public.
Faith Bemiss can be reached at 530-0289 or on Twitter @flbemiss.