Third Year Music student Toks Dada tells us about getting involved in his dream creative project – The Mega Messiah, a scratch production of Handel’s Messiah at the Wales Millennium Centre this autumn.
On Wednesday the 3rd of August, an email notification from my LinkedIn account flashed up on my Blackberry:
Deborah Perkin has indicated you are a Friend
“Hi Toks – I don’t know you but I’m organising a huge scratch Messiah on 6 September at the Wales Millennium Centre in aid of Fairbridge (now part of the Prince’s Trust). Wondered if you’d like a chat about it?” Deborah
Deborah Perkin. The name didn’t ring any bells but of course, I did what any eager creative would do and immediately clicked the ‘View Invitation from Deborah Perkin’ link. Deborah Perkin: Senior Producer at BBC. What was this huge ‘scratch’ Messiah event? What was it she thought I could offer? And more to the point, why would someone like her be adding someone like me on LinkedIn? I was stunned.
With the exception of a few mediocre start-ups in high school the only successful venture I had to my name was Sinfonia Newydd – the contemporary music ensemble I started about 18 months previously.
I met Deborah at Henry’s Cafe Bar for herbal tea and chats. I quickly learned that Deborah had produced numerous high profile projects, as well as short films and documentaries for the BBC. I reciprocated with stories of Sinfonia Newydd and RWCMD, and before long we were talking all things Mega Messiah. The plan was to rehearse an ensemble of about 70 and a chorus of about 50 and a selection of soloists, all coming from RWCMD. And then on the day allow about 1000 members of the public to come along for the mass singing ride. It felt new. It felt exciting. It felt right.
Here I was, a 21-year-old aspiring creative entrepreneur, drinking tea with a BBC producer and talking about the possibilities of bringing together a thousand people on the 6th November to come and be part of a truly magical Handel’s Messiah experience. And the best part of it all? By raising money for Fairbridge and the Prince’s Trust, we could change people’s lives all at the same time. Sharing the greatest of music with the masses whilst helping people – what could be better?
The Mega Messiah takes place at Wales Millennium Centre on 6th November. Keep checking the blog for more updates from Toks.