Do-It-Yourself-Messiah Preview - A Great Chicago Tradition


Chicago’s iconic annual “Do-It-Yourself Messiah” is a 38-year old holiday event that attracts thousands of amateur singers and musicians from throughout the metropolitan area and region to perform alongside world-class professional conductor and soloists.  The thrill of singing Handel’s masterpiece in the company of international soloists and a full symphony orchestra, in the midst of a 1,500 mega-choir, keeps choristers coming back year after year.



Celebrating its 38th annual performances in 2013, the Do-It-Yourself Messiah will take place at Harris Theater for Music and Dance in Millennium Park on Thursday, December 19 and Friday, December 20 at 7:00 p.m.



The music of Handel comes to life in Chicago every Christmas with his magnificent Messiah performed by an audience of thousands, featuring world-class soloists and a full orchestra of local amateur and professional musicians, all volunteering their time and talent.




Al Booth, founder of the International Music Foundation, was living and working in England in 1973 when he and his wife attended a Christmas sing-along performance of Messiah at a parish church in Kent. “Walking out of that church I felt a kind of hopefulness and camaraderie I had seldom witnessed. And I vowed that when I returned to the States, I would try to bring the people of Chicago the same kind of experience.” Through the generosity of Talman Home Federal Savings and later LaSalle Bank and Bank of America, he realized that dream, and since 1976, we have all benefited from his vision. Though Al passed away in 2007, his dream lives on in these wildly popular performances which draw communities together in a common musical purpose.

In 2013, the tradition lives on with the generous support of our sponsors: Wintrust Financial Corp., Performance Trust Companies and other corporate partners willing to preserve this much-loved holiday tradition of 37 years.


Artists for 2013:

  • Stanley Sperber, Conductor
  • Michelle Areyzaga , Soprano
  • Jill Grove, Alto
  • Marc Molomot, Tenor
  • Mark Steven Doss, Bass-Baritone
  • David Schrader, Harpsichord
  • Aaron Krister Johnson, Organ
  • Richard Young, Concertmaster
  • Paul Semanic, Trumpet


To make a donation visit the fundraising campaign website.   

For more information on this event visit the event page on the International Music Foundation website



Photos courtesy of International Music Foundation


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