Okanagan Symphony Orchestra music director Rosemary Thomson in action at the podium. Photo by Lynda Miller

Okanagan Symphony Orchestra music director Rosemary Thomson in action at the podium. Photo by Lynda Miller

Okanagan Symphony gets a handle on Handel’s Messiah

Kelowna, Penticton and Vernon concerts this weekend

In honour of the joyful holiday season that is now upon us, the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra and Music Director Rosemary Thomson are excited to present Handel’s iconic choral work, Messiah. The show graces the Kelowna Community Theatre stage Friday, Dec. 20 at 7:30 p.m., Penticton Cleland Theatre Saturday. Dec. 21 at 7:30 p.m. and the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre Sunday, Dec. 22 at 2 p.m.

Messiah holds a special place in Thomson’s heart. She has sung in the chorus at least 15 times, sung some of the soprano solos, played harpsichord, played cello, prepared the chorus, and conducted this masterpiece many times.

“Messiah was actually the very first piece that I conducted with the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra back in 1999,” said Thomson. “A special one for me, indeed.”

On stage for the three Okanagan performances will be the OSO’s own Okanagan Symphony Chorus, made up of singers from throughout the valley, and generously sponsored by Nixon Wenger LLP.

In addition, four incredible soloists are welcomed to the stages: Soprano Kallie Clayton; Counter Tenor Shane Hanson; Tenor Owen McCausland and Bass-Baritone Stephen Hegedus.

Messiah has stood the test of time as one of the most popular works in the classical repertoire, with its beautiful arias, brilliant choruses and imaginative orchestration. For many, it has become a part of Christmas holiday tradition, despite the fact that Handel had originally written the piece to be performed at Easter!

For more information about Messiah and links to ticket purchases visit okanagansymphony.com or call Kelowna Tickets 250-862-2867 (for Kelowna) or 888-974-9170 (Penticton) or Ticket Seller 250-549-7469 (Vernon).

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