Few choirs know Handel’s Messiah so intimately – or perform it so well – as the famous Choir of Trinity Wall Street.  It gave one of the very first North American performances of the work in 1770, less than thirty years after it premièred in Dublin, Ireland, and it has been performing it most Decembers ever since.

Normally one must go to New York to hear a performance (if you can manage to get a ticket).  This year, however – for the very first time – Trinity comes to the Somerset Hills.  Led by its conductor and choir master, Julian Wachner, the Choir of Trinity Wall Street, together with the Trinity Baroque Orchestra will perform Handel’s Messiah at St. Mary’s Abbey at Delbarton (230 Mendham Road, Morristown) at 7:30 PM on Tuesday, December 15.

The performance is part of the concert season of Music in the Somerset Hills, a not-for-profit organization founded in 2010 by Stephen Sands.  In its four seasons to date, Music in the Somerset Hills has emerged as a powerful force for music in the region.  In addition to its much-acclaimed concerts (six or seven each season), it has its own 70-strong Community Chorus made up of amateurs who love to sing (aged 14 to 80), who are prepared to accept the challenge of tackling great choral works under the direction of Mr. Sands, and of eventually performing with professional soloists and orchestras.  In addition to its concerts, Music in the Somerset Hills runs a very active educational program, featuring summer camps for children and teenagers, as well as early childhood Musikgarten courses and adult courses in guitar and yoga (MusicSH.org).

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As well as being Artistic Director of Music in the Somerset Hills, Stephen Sands, who lives in Basking Ridge and teaches in the Somerset Hills School District, is a member of the Choir of Trinity Wall Street.  In Handel’s Messiah, he is one of the tenor soloists.

Tickets (from $20 to $75) for the December 15 performance of Messiah can be obtained at MusicSH.org/Concerts