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CALL Event: Dinner and Handel's Messiah

  • Friday, December 2, 2022
  • 5:30 PM–9:00 PM
  • Covenant Fine Arts Center
  • 65.00

Members of the Calvin Academy of Lifelong Learning (CALL) are invited to a special event on December 2, 2022. Join us for a wonderful dinner in the Calvin Alumni Board Room with special guest speaker Alexis VanZalen who will share her knowledge of Handel’s Messiah. Dr. Alexis VanZalen works as a Program Coordinator at the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship and as a church organist in Grand Rapids. She holds bachelor's and master's degrees in organ performance and early music, and in 2020 completed her PhD in musicology at the Eastman School of Music. Alexis wrote her dissertation on the influence of Catholic liturgical reform on organ music from 17th-century France and specializes in Baroque music more generally.

After dinner, the group will enjoy a performance of Handel’s Messiah by the Calvin Oratorio Society. This year’s 90-minute version will feature nine movements for full chorus and solos and have no intermission. We’re pleased to welcome back John Varineau as conductor, along with four Calvin University graduates as soloists: Lisa Walhout, soprano; Helen VanWyck, mezzo; Fitah Rasendrahasina, tenor; and Jonathan TenBrink, bass. For over 100 years, the Calvin Oratorio Society has heralded the arrival of the Christmas season with performances of Handel’s Messiah. The chorus brings together students, staff, factualty, alumni, and other community members. For many, the Messiah experience is more than just a performance. “They don’t just sing it as a piece of beautiful music, you can see the heart and soul in the music … They believe what they’re singing. They treat the concert as a form of worship,” Pearl Shangkuan said. The same is true for the audience: “People who come are spiritually nourished by this work.”

Dinner: 5:30-7:00 pm in the Calvin Alumni board room

Menu: Mustard Crusted Pork Loin with demi-glaze, faro and heirloom carrot salad with caraway dressing or Plant based option, House salad, rolls, vegetables, a starch, coffee or tea, and Chocolate Decadence for dessert (this is vegan and wheat-free) 


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Location details

1795 Knollcrest Circle SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49546

December 2022
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