The Handel and Haydn Society is internationally acclaimed for its performances of Baroque and Classical
music. Based in Boston, H+H’s orchestra and chorus delight more than 50,000
listeners each year with a ten-concert subscription series at Symphony Hall and
other leading venues in addition to a robust program of intimate events in
museums, schools, and community centers. Under the leadership of Artistic Director
Harry Christophers, the ensemble embraces historically informed performance,
bringing classical music to life with the same immediacy it had the day it was
written. Through the Karen S. and George D. Levy Education Program, H+H also
provides engaging, accessible, and broadly inclusive music education to over
11,500 children each year through in-school music instruction and the Vocal
Arts Program that includes six youth choruses.
Founded in Boston in 1815, H+H is among the oldest continuously performing classical music ensembles in
the United States and is unique for its longevity, capacity for reinvention,
and distinguished history of premieres. H+H began as a choral society founded
by middle-class Bostonians who aspired to improve the quality of singing in
their growing American city. They named the organization after two
composers—Handel and Haydn—to represent both the old music of the 18th century
and what was then the new music of the 19th century. In the first decades of
its existence, H+H gave the American premieres of Handel’s Messiah(1818),
Haydn’s Creation(1819), Verdi’s Requiem(1878), and Bach’s St.
Matthew Passion(1879). Since its founding, H+H has given more than 2,000
performances before a total audience exceeding 2.8 million.
In addition to its subscription series, tours, and
broadcast performances, H+H reaches a worldwide audience through ambitious
recordings including the critically-acclaimed Haydn The Creation, the
best-selling Joy to the World: An American Christmas, and Handel Messiah,
recorded live at Symphony Hall under Christophers’s direction.