Mr Hick was taken in by the directness of the performance, with the singers performing the piece entirely from memory, as well as the very 'live' experience resulting from the lack of a conductor.
We were told more than once that the performance resulted in a rare intensity of delivery and focus of message, in the words of Mr Hicks, 'stripping away the religiosity to reveal the spiritual heart of the work'. It's this directness of communication in vocal music that is one of our central aims.
Another of those tenets is that the performers enjoy themselves, something seen all too little in London and which translates infectiously to an audience. Judging from the response from some of the performers, who get through multiple Messiahs in a single season, we achieved that too: "by far the most stimulating Messiah of my season!", "it was a very special and moving performance that I will remember for a long time to come", "it was the most exciting performance of the piece I have ever done, and certainly the most rewarding".
We were also very happy that children from the Klevis Kola Foundation were able to join us for the rehearsal and concert, and explore the exotic world of historical instruments in the break.
The chamber Messiah will be back on the menu at some point, but probably not next December, although our audience is growing nicely. We're thinking of something new to challenge you with!