Handel: The Resurrection

»La Resurrezione« – Les Musiciens du Louvre / Soloists / Marc Minkowski

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Marc Minkowski
Marc Minkowski © Franck Ferville / Agence VU

Handel’s Resurrection

The British Guardian called the ensemble Les Musiciens du Louvre »one of the best orchestras in the world«. Founded in 1982 by the conductor and oboist Marc Minkowski, it is not the Louvre’s official orchestra – no such ensemble exists. But the reference to the world-famous Parisian museum already illustrates the musicians’ mission: to bring the art of earlier centuries to life at the highest level.

Appropriately enough, their forthcoming guest appearance in Hamburg at Easter features a Handel oratorio about the Resurrection of Christ. Composer George Frideric Handel found himself in a double bind in 1708. Firstly, the Pope had imposed a complete ban on opera performances because he feared a series of earthquakes meant that the end of the world was imminent, and restricted sinful entertainment in favour of religious art. This was a problem for Handel, who was an opera man to the core, both artistically and financially. Secondly, he wanted to present a piece about the Resurrection punctually for the Easter weekend, but having Jesus Christ appear on stage in person was an even greater taboo than opera per se.

Pragmatic as ever, Handel arrived at the following solution: in his original oratorio »La Resurrezione«, angels and the Devil, apostles and Mary Magdalene debate about the Crucifixion. And in the end, the music itself turned out quite operatic after all.


Les Musiciens du Louvre

Caroline Jestaedt soprano

Ana Maria Labin Mary Magdalene

Astrid Nordstad Mary Cleophas

James Platt bass

James Way John the Evangelist

conductor Marc Minkowski


Georg Friedrich Händel
La resurrezione di Nostro Signor Gesù Cristo / oratorio in two parts, HWV 47

Pre-Concert Talk

with Anne Kussmaul (in German)

19:00 / Elbphilharmonie, Großer Saal

Estimated end time



Easter Highlights

Promoter: HamburgMusik

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