Messiah comes to three Flathead towns

Glacier Symphony & Chorale perform in Bigfork, Whitefish and Kalispell

On Stage

Glacier Chorale, accompanied by a chamber orchestra of Glacier Symphony musicians, will perform George Frideric Handel’s iconic Messiah in three venues in the Flathead Valley Dec. 2-4. John Zoltek, artistic director of the GSC, will conduct the ensemble.

Zoltek says the Messiah has become somewhat of a mainstay of the Christmas season, although it was originally written to be performed during the Easter season to celebrate the incarnation and resurrection of Christ and his ultimate glorification in heaven.

The GSC will perform a shorter “Christmas portion” of the popular piece that focuses on some of Messiah’s best loved, magnificent choruses including “And the Glory of the Lord” and the majestic “He Shall Purify.” It will conclude with the popular “Halleluiah Chorus,” considered one of the greatest sacred selections of the entire choral repertory.

Performing the solo sections of the Messiah will be singers from the Glacier Chorale including soprano Barbara Burch, alto Kari Donovan, tenor Josh Holloway and bass Brad Seaman.

Handel completed the score for Messiah in a flash of what he called “divine inspiration” in just over two weeks. The oratorio is defined as a dramatic narrative work for orchestra soloists and chorus.

“Because of Handel’s opera experience he was able to meld perfect dramatic quality into this his greatest oratorio and work,” says Zoltek. “It is astounding that this work has held large popularity for nearly 300 years! This is unprecedented in music history.”

Concert Schedule

Bigfork: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2, at Bethany Lutheran Church, 8559 Highway 35

Whitefish: 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 3, at the Whitefish Performing Arts Center

Kalispell: 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 4, at Flathead High School Performance Hall

Tickets are available in a range of pricing at each venue; the Bigfork venue is general seating and Whitefish PAC and Flathead High Performance Hall offer seating in tiers. Buy online at or call the GSC Box Office at 406-407-7000.