Introductory talk: Dr. Erik Dremel, Theological Faculty of Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg | 6pm | Handel House, Chamber Music Hall | Admission free – unnumbered seating (Duration 30 minutes approx.) (in German)
Handel maintained close relations with the English royal family and in particular with the women of the royal family. Even during his first stay in London, the doors of England’s royal palace were opened to him after he wrote a very moving piece of music in homage to the reigning monarch, Queen Anne, in 1713 on the occasion of her birthday. The queen was overjoyed with this musical gift and granted Handel an annual pension of 200 pounds. The British royal family still use the opening aria of this ode on festive occasions. Only very recently, it was performed at the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Handel also had a very close friendship with Queen Caroline, the wife of King George II. For her arrival in London, he composed a solemn Te Deum. Handel’s sometimes official, sometimes highly personal compositions for his queens will be performed by two Saxony-based music ensembles conducted by Matthias Jung that are now captivating audiences far across national boundaries.