The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

Symphony and choral society collaborating to play ‘Messiah’

Washington Idaho Symphony and Palouse Choral Society performing Dec. 9
Palouse+Choral+Society+at+a+performance+in+October+2022.
COURTESY OF JANICE O’TOOLE
Palouse Choral Society at a performance in October 2022.

Washington Idaho Symphony will perform Georg F. Handel’s “Messiah” in collaboration with Palouse Choral Society at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 9 and 4 p.m. Dec. 10 at Pullman High School.

The artists will play 80 minutes of the original two-and-a-half-hour-long piece, said Matthew Myers, Palouse Choral Society artistic director and WSU choral music education assistant professor.

Most members of the choral society and the symphony orchestra find this music a familiar part of their repertoire, but the work of putting it together requires time, Myers said. 

“The Palouse Choral Society has a six-week rehearsal period of 2-hour rehearsals to prepare for ‘Messiah,’” Myers said. 

Diane Worthey, WIS member and UI violin and viola instructor, has played “Messiah” many times, but certain movements still require revisiting in daily practice, Worthey said.

“There’s not a moment or section I dislike in Messiah,” Worthey said. “But it’s hard to top the feeling I get when playing the most famous part of the oratorio — the Hallelujah chorus.”

Myers said they will use “Hallelujah” as the closing chorus to the entire performance.

The most important consideration for the event location is to fit the choir of 80 and the orchestra of 20 on the stage, with a great view for the audience, Myers said. PHS is a great venue for their needs, as the school is big enough to fit their entire personnel.

For logistics, marketing, fundraising, ticket sales and stage set-up, both organizations are coordinating to make arrangements, Myers said. Four guest soloists are expected to perform in the event.

“The collaboration between our two organizations requires a lot more advance planning and communication than some of our other concerts,” Myers said. “It’s a different way to approach group singing, but it’s so exciting when it all comes together.”

Presale tickets cost $20 for adults and $8 for youth ages 12–18 and are available for purchase on WIS’ website. The performance is free to attend for children ages 11 or younger.

Messiah is one of the most famous pieces of music, Myers said.

“I can imagine it remaining popular 100 years from now,” Myers said. “I’m so happy that arts patrons in the Palouse are able to experience the magnificence of one of music history’s most time-honored pieces through this collaboration.”

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