What music is part of your holiday? ‘Messiah’ is part of mine

By Barb Van Atta

Have you attended a concert or pageant to get into the holiday spirit? Or, like me, have you been too busy rehearsing to be in an audience? Either way, BAMirror welcomes your comments and reflections on seasonal music.

As I said, I’ve been in rehearsal, as has my son, for the Downtown Singers’ presentation of Handel’s Messiah on Friday and Saturday (Dec. 16 and 17) at The Forum in Binghamton. Here is a link to a Good Times story that features chorus members who have been around since Alan Crabb and the Rev. Hugh Miller of the former Centenary United Methodist Church in downtown Binghamton came up with the idea of the Downtown Singers: http://tinyurl.com/ccv3qfd.  (One adjustment to the article: Bruce Reed thought he sang with the group in 1993; it actually was 1992.)


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‘Messiah’ by the Downtown Singers: A sparkling tradition continues

Reviewed by Leo Cotnoir

Before moving to Binghamton a decade ago, I lived for many years in Washinton, D.C. The nation’s capital is home to some of the best professional choruses in the world, so I heard many outstanding performances of Handel’s “Messiah.”  The Downtown Singers could share the stage with any of them (full disclosure: my wife, Glenda, was in the alto section at The Forum in Binghamton). Not only was the singing splendid but the orchestra, except for a few intonation issues among the second violins, was superb, nicely underplaying both the soloists and the chorus. In part thanks to the particularly strong low strings, the outnumbered male voices were never overwhelmed by the sopranos and altos as is often the case in amateur choirs. Read the rest of this entry »