This handbook covers Handel's best known public music, the Water Music, written at the outset of his English career, and the Music for the Royal Fireworks, the last and largest of his orchestral creations. The genesis of these two orchestral suites is examined in its political as well as musical context; practical questions of performance style and interpretation are balanced by an enquiry into Handel's compositional processes, and the relationship of his other large-scale orchestral compositions, especially the Concerti a due cori, to these suites. Original source material is set alongside the most recent theories on Handel's character and working methods. In particular the problem of 'borrowings' is addressed with reference to most recent identifications of Handel's sources, together with the later presentation of these works in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, with an account of recordings, editions and a summary of performance questions.
1. The character of the man
2. Politics and power
3. Water Music
4. The 'indebtedness' of Handel
5. The Concerti a due cori
6. Politics and peace
7. Music for the Royal Fireworks
8. Handel in other hands
9. Performance parameters
Appendix: Sources of shared material
Christopher Hogwood, University of Cambridge
Christopher Hogwood conducts repertoire ranging from the baroque to contemporary, always with the prevailing philosophy of revealing the original sound-world of the composer. Founder and director of The Academy of Ancient Music since 1973, he continues to work internationally with both period-instrument and modern ensembles. He has more than 200 critically acclaimed recordings to his name. Central to Hogwood's musical approach is the connection between musicology and performance: his editorial projects frequently follow initial research through to performance or recording. He is currently engaged with editing keyboard music from the Fitzwilliam Museum for Musica Britannica, the complete keyboard works of Henry Purcell for the Purcell Society, Mendelssohn's seven great concert overtures for Barenreiter and the original version of La Revue de Cuisine to be recorded by the Czech Philharmonic (Supraphon). His many publications include a survey of patronage through the ages (Music at Court), biographical studies of Haydn, Mozart and Handel, a history of the trio sonata, and Music in Eighteenth-Century England (Cambridge, 1983). Hogwood's academic positions include Honorary Professor of Music at the University of Cambridge, Fellowships at Jesus and Pembroke Colleges, Cambridge, and Visiting Professor at the Royal Academy of Music. He also teaches regularly at Harvard University.