GEORGE FRIDERIC HANDEL 1685-1759

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  George Frideric (or Frederick) Handel was a British and German Baroque composer who spent the bulk of his career in London, becoming well known for his operas, oratorios, anthems, and organ concertos. Handel received important training in Halle-upon-Saale and worked as a composer in Hamburg and Italy before settling in London in 1712; he became a naturalised British subject in 1727. Within fifteen years, Handel had started three commercial opera companies to supply the English nobility with Italian opera. Musicologist Winton    Dean writes that his operas show that «Handel was not only a great composer; he was a dramatic genius of the first order.» As Alexander’s Feast (1736) was well received, Handel made a transition to English choral works.

After his success with Messiah (1742) he never composed an Italian opera again. Almost blind, and having lived in England for nearly fifty years, he died in 1759, a respected and rich man. His funeral was given full state honours, and he was buried in Westminster Abbey in London.

   Handel composed more than forty operas in over thirty years, and since the late 1960s, with the revival of baroque music and historically informed musical performance, interest in Handel's operas has grown.

"Portrait of  George Frideric Handel"

Author Rinat Kuramshin

Interior of the Covent Garden Theatre

in London

Handel House at 25 Brook Street, Mayfair, London

Handel (centre) and King George Ion the River Thames, 17 July 1717, by E.Hamman (1819-1888)

The Queen’s Theatre in the Haymarket in London by William
Capon

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