MONT ALTO — Ever wondered what motivated Handel to write the now famous Messiah?
Learn how it came about during Penn State Mont Alto’s April Evening Talk Series.
The April 3 event will feature “The True Story of How and Why Handel Wrote ‘Messiah.’”
The talk will be presented by William (Bill) Rolar, lecturer in music, beginning at 7:30 p.m. in the General Studies Auditorium on the University’s campus.
If weather permits, a Star Party will follow led by Kimberly Herrmann, associate professor in physics and astronomy.
That will take place in the field between Orchard Road and the General Studies Building parking lot from 8:45 to 10:00 p.m.
Both the Evening Talk and Star Party are free of charge and open to the public. Handicap parking is available.
Exploring Handel’s challenge
Rolar will explore the story of George Frideric Handel’s personal situation leading him to write “Messiah” during financial desperation in Ireland in 1742.
A short historical fiction film will help tell the story.
It includes a performance of ‘Hallelujah’ an enormous chorus accompanied by the world’s largest functional pipe organ with a nine-story pure golden facade will be part of the event, according to Rolar.
“This occurred in a massive Philadelphia department store with a marble interior,” he said.
Special treat: ‘Hallelujah’
The presentation also will include a performance of “Hallelujah,” with 6,000 musicians. full orchestra and organ in a large London circular concert hall.
There will be time for questions, comments, and reactions
Following the evening talk, Herrmann, will lead a Star Party.
Telescope viewing and night sky tours
Telescope viewing and night-sky tours with green laser pointers will be part of the star party activities.
Multiple telescopes should be available, courtesy of the TriState Astronomers, a local amateur astronomy club.
In the event of cold weather, patrons should wear layers of clothing and bring jackets, hats and gloves.
In the event of rain or cloudy skies, the star party may be canceled. If so, it will be noted on the campus calendar here.
Planetarium shows in April
Those interested in astronomy also can attend Penn State Mont Alto Planetarium Shows in April.
Those are scheduled for 8-9 p.m. April 18 and 7-8 p.m. April 19 in the Multipurpose Activities Center (MAC) on campus.
Visitors will have the option of watching a full dome video on various astronomy topics.
Questions about the astronomical wonders in the sky, the solar system and beyond will be welcomed.
Individuals can bring a camping chair, beach chair, or pillow to sit on. Standard folding chairs should also be available.
Recommended for ages 5 and up, the shows will be similar. They are open to the public and are free of charge.
For more information, contact Debra Collins, director of public relations and marketing at 717-749-6112 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.