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George Frideric Handel

German composer George Frideric Handel appears on the last of the series of portrait passes. He was chosen because his collection of orchestral movements, titled Water Music was played at different venues throughout the fair, and the exposition itself featured a number of striking water and fountain effects.

He was born in Germany, and shares his birth year, 1685, with two other famous composers, J.S. Bach, and Domenico Scarlatti. His compositions drew heavily on Baroque forms and are said to have bridged the Baroque and subsequent Classical music eras. When most of us think of great composers we think of Mozart or Beethoven, but when Mozart and Beethoven thought of composers, their musical minds often went to Handel. Beethoven is said to have referred to Handel as " The master of us all." Mozart respected his phrasing, and his utter sense of compositional control. "Handel understands effect better than any of us. When he chooses, he strikes like a thunder bolt," he was quoted as saying.

Water Music was written at the request of King George I of England in 1717, after the king decided he needed some mood music to go with a planned barge cruise down the River Thames. Fifty musicians boarded the barge with the king, who was so delighted with the tunes that he had the orchestra play it three times on the trip.

The Handel ticket the key piece in completing the collection of the portrait series of Exposition passes, because it was last, and only 100,000 were printed.
Handel's portrait seems somewhat wan and his attire questionable, as he plucks his harp on the ticket. The headgear was in fact an artistic accoutrement in his day, as was the blousy style of his shirt. Whatever the immediate effect of his appearance, he is best know for his , "Messiah", which has become the classic Christmas composition, and, like his Water Music, is replete with the thundering and exalting passages that mark his work.

The Handel pass is the rarest of the group. Like Franklin it wasn't part of the original run, but printed later in a limited quantity of 100,000 making it the "key" to completing the set. The ink, brightness, corners, and eye appeal that make this among the best available. Sharp corners, super margins, AU to UNC. Bright White.












Bright White, Choice
















Handel's ability to bring the big booming sound influenced the classical movement. Portraits of the real Handel present a formidable figure, different from the sleepy harp player on Expo tickets.










Real Handel



Absolutely clean machine, vanilla while finish. Corners sharp, and color rich. Go by photo.









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