MINTY: Handel’s ‘Messiah’ and other music this month from Surrey-based groups

BC Girls Choir’s 'Songs for a Winter’s Night' concert on Saturday night

Portrait of Georg Friedrich Handel.

Portrait of Georg Friedrich Handel.

SURREY — Music has been part of the human experience since the beginning of time, and mankind. Just like the evolution of technology, music and musical instruments and styles have exploded in variety since prehistoric times. We have evolved from using sticks and stones (earliest known types of musical instruments) to digital instruments that can replicate almost any type of sound – and amplify the result as well to dangerous decibel levels.

Today, we can enjoy a wealth of music that has come to us from the beginning of time.

The Surrey-based Handel Society of Music is celebrating 50 years of performing for local audiences. This month, members of the organization will again be performing Georg Friedrich Handel’s “Messiah,” an English-language oratorio with scriptural text composed in 1741 – a bit of musical history, there. The choir and orchestra, under the direction of Johan Louwersheimer, will perform on Friday, Dec. 16, 7:30 p.m. at Willoughby Heights Canadian Reformed Church (7949 202A St., Langley) and also at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 17 at White Rock’s First United Church (15385 Semiahmoo Ave.). For more information and tickets, visit or phone 604-591-2632. Tickets can also be purchased at Christopher’s Gift Gallery in South Surrey, Tapestry Music in White Rock, the Long & McQuade store in Langley and European Deli & Catering, also in Langley.

This weekend, you can participate in a festive evening of carol singing at Historic Stewart Farm, 13723 Crescent Rd., in South Surrey. This heritage home is maintained by the City of Surrey and emulates life here at the turn of the 19th century. The evening “carol sing,” on Saturday, Dec. 10 has two sessions, from 6 to 7 p.m. and 7:30 to 8:30, followed by singing, treats and general merriment after hours in the charmingly period-decorated Stewart Hall. Participants must pre-register by calling 604-592-6956. Admission is $5 for children and seniors, $7.50 for adults. It’s just a little bit of history with music. Jingle those bells. Yep, there’s a lot of music history to bell ringing, too. CLICK HERE for details.

And speaking of bells, one of the most beautiful choral music pieces written for the female voice is “Carol of the Bells.” This and other favourite seasonal songs are part of the BC Girls Choir’s concert, “Songs for a Winter’s Night,” featuring the poetry of Canadian composer Gordon Lightfoot. Join more than 100 women and girls as they sing in a candlelight concert on Saturday (Dec. 10), starting at 7:30 p.m. at Highlands United Church, 3255 Edgemont Blvd., North Vancouver. Tickets at the door; visit for some more details. Simply an amazing experience.

Closer to home, Surrey Symphony Society is celebrating its 40th anniversary this season. Since 1976, the organization has provided young musicians with high-caliber musical instruction and opportunities for public performance.

“Sounds of the Seasons” is the title of this year’s Christmas concert, set for Sunday, Dec. 11 at the beautifully acoustic Chandos Pattison Auditorium (at Pacific Academy, 10238 168th St., Surrey). You will enjoy festive favourites and joyous music performed by the Junior Strings, Intermediate Orchestra and Surrey Youth Orchestra. Tickets are $18/$12; phone the box office at 778-549-5515.


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