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Handel’s Messiah excerpts arranged for Piano, the Silent Monks, and an embarrassing performance at Barnes and Noble.

I have to laugh, but not meaning to be sacrilegious. I absolutely adore Handel’s Messiah and have always savored the yearly Sing-Along at First Presbyterian Church in Fresno. If it wasn’t so difficult to read off the original score with chorus and ensemble, I would be resurrecting these on You Tube, but the page turns alone are impossible.

Okay, so I cheated, and found Bill Boyd’s arrangements for piano and selected some of my favorites to record and upload. Here they are:

The tour de Force, however, (“Hallejulia” Chorus) I left to the Silent Monks.

But first, I’ll share a story that has a tinge of sacrilege referenced earlier.

On December 6th, 1998 I was scheduled to perform Messiah excerpts at Barnes and Noble using my transported digital keyboard since the bookseller had no acoustic piano. My plan was to play the Bill Boyd arrangements which I termed a “reduced” version. At least that’s how I communicated the gist of my program to the Public Relations Director, Karen West, who now works at Book Passages in Corte Madera.

Well, either she took my description quite literally or she had a sophisticated sense of humor.

Lo and Behold on the day of my program, I came smack up against a life-size poster of myself, in the midst of the following announcement:

I felt so embarrassed, but also amused.

In very Conservative, Christian Fresno how would this come off?!

I shouldn’t have given it a second thought.

On the day of my event, it didn’t make a shred of an impact. The audience seemed attentive just the same. Most just walked by the poster without a snicker.

But perhaps this blockbuster performance by the Silent Monks would have gotten a rise out of them.

A Shout Out to Lisa C. for sending me this link!