Messiah Sing- and Play-Along

In the chorus "For Unto Us a Child is Born" in his Messiah, Handel sets the syllable "born" to a chain of 56 rapid notes—which actually can make you sound something like a woman in labor if you don't read ahead in the score and pace your breathing. Just a little tip from someone who's participated in one of the popular sing- and play-along readings that dot the holiday season. Seattle Pro Musica director Karen P. Thomas leads University Unitarian's 43rd annual DIY performance tonight. Bring your instrument (and a music stand) or come to sing (bring a vocal score if you have one). Though most of Messiah's text deals with Christ's life and death—the 1741 work was in fact intended for Easter—the radiance and sparkle of the Nativity section has made it a Christmas tradition. If the later stuff about stripes and iniquity and worms destroying this body can be a bit of a downer, it's less so if you're singing it yourself. GAVIN BORCHERT

Wed., Dec. 26, 7 p.m., 2012

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