Photo: Patrick Allen
Photo: Patrick Allen

James Gilchrist joins early music ensemble Le Concert Lorrain next week for performances of George Frideric Handel’s Israel in Egypt, an oratorio based on Old Testament texts narrating the flight of the Israelites.

Though often performed as an abridged two-part work, especially in the nineteenth century when the work was Handel’s most popular oratorio, Le Concert Lorrain will be performing Handel’s original conception: the version first performed in 1739. This thrilling three-part epic traces the journey from desolation to jubilation, and with it contains some of the boldest, most vivid word painting in the composer’s oeuvre.

James and the ensemble will be joined by sopranos Julia Doyle and Maria Valdmaa, countertenor David Allsopp, basses Roderick Williams and Peter Harvey, and Nederlands Kamerkoor conducted by Roy Goodman.

The team will be recording the work in the great acoustic of Dom Zu Verden, Bremen early in the week, before performing there on Friday 19 September as part of Musikfest Bremen. Performances will then move to France, at Arsenal-Metz en Scènes on Saturday 20 September and in the Abbatiale d’Ambronay on 21 September as part of the Festival de Musique Baroque.

Le Concert Lorrain