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Handel: A Classical Icon: Track 1

Featuring: Video Video Audio Audio

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In commemoration of Handel's 250th anniversary, world renowned Handel scholar and Open University Professor Donald Burrows introduces one of the most famous composers of the eighteenth century. Devised for non-musicians and beginners, the 5 video and 5 audio tracks in this album explore the music that made Handel famous. His operas are classics of the Baroque style, his oratorios are the basis of English choral tradition, his music still played today at every monarch's coronation. This "Great Londoner" became an icon in his own lifetime. What is the secret of his success? What was one of Handel's performances like, and how powerful is his legacy?

By: The OpenLearn team (The Open University,)

  • Duration 1 hour
  • Updated Sunday 22nd March 2009
  • Posted under Music
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Track 1: Who is Handel?

An introduction to Handel's background, his classic hits and his life in London.


© The Open University 2009


Tracks in this podcast:

Track   Title Description
1 Who is Handel?    An introduction to Handel's background, his classic hits and his life in London. Play now Who is Handel?
2 Handel's Opera    A taste of Handel's elaborate arias, dramatic plots and impressive stage scenery. Highlights from a modern ENO performance, and a preserved eighteenth century theatre. Play now Handel's Opera
3 Handel's Church Music    Donald Burrows visits Handel's parish church in London and describes how Handel composed the most powerful Cathedral music Britain had ever heard. Play now Handel's Church Music
4 Handel's Oratorio    The story behind Handel's most famous oratorio, Messiah. What distinguishes an oratorio from an opera and what is special about Handel's oratorios? Play now Handel's Oratorio
5 Handel's Water Music    How a royal quarrel led to the finest water party in London's history. Play now Handel's Water Music
6 Handel's Patrons    Who did Handel work for and how did he make a living? A smart political operator, Handel composed for royalty in Rome, Germany and Britain. Play now Handel's Patrons
7 Handel's Divas    Opera singers of C18th were as famous as premier football players today. Donald Burrows reveals the scandals that made Handel's theatre the talk of the town. Play now Handel's Divas
8 Handel's Samson Oratorio in Context    Donald Burrows outlines the risks Handel faced when developing his own style of biblical concert drama. Play now Handel's Samson Oratorio in Context
9 Handel's Samson Oratorio Extract    Donald Burrows introduces an authentic recording, performed by Harry Christopher and The Sixteen. Play now Handel's Samson Oratorio Extract
10 Professor Donald Burrows' Research    This is a special time for Handel scholars. Donald Burrows talks about the conferences and performances taking place this year, and describes his latest projects. Play now Professor Donald Burrows' Research

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