Music Education

“The Master of us all”: The Life and Music of Handel  

One of history’s greatest composers, George Frideric Handel (1685-1759) was a Governor and benefactor of the Foundling Hospital. Annual performances of Handel’s oratorio Messiah provided the charity with vital income and tickets were in great demand by 18th-century London’s ‘in crowd’.

Students gain unique access to priceless historical artefacts. In addition to the score and parts of Messiah bequeathed to the Hospital, the Museum houses the Gerald Coke Handel Collection, an internationally important collection of material relating to Handel and his contemporaries. This rich resource includes manuscripts, printed books and music, libretti, paintings and engravings, memorabilia, art works and ephemera.

This session will be tailored to support your group’s course studies, from Key Stage 4, GCSE and A Level to Further and Higher education, and is led by a librarian from the Gerald Coke Handel Collection. For further details contact

MA in 18th Century Studies: Postgraduate

 The Museum and its Collections support an MA course offered by King's College London in partnership with the British Museum. Course leaders include scholars from eight departments in the School of Humanities and senior British Museum staff.

The core module explores constructions of the Enlightenment, then and now, through frameworks such as race, gender, class, intellectual networks and material culture, and invites students to analyse ideas, objects, texts and arts of the eighteenth century. For more information, please click here

Music partnership with Goldsmiths College, University of London

The Gerald Coke Handel Collection has formed a partnership with the music department of Goldsmiths College, University of London, to support undergraduate and postgraduate courses using the rich resources of the Coke Collection.  Seminars are presented at the Museum by staff from both institutions and students have the opportunity to pursue research projects using the collection resources to support study in eighteenth-century music and musical life in London, performance reception and source studies.

For further details contact

Images: Score of Messiah © Coram in the care of the Foundling Museum and John Beard, ca. 1743, oil on canvas by Thomas Hudson © The Gerald Coke Handel Collection. John Beard sang in many of the first and early performances of George Frideric Handel's oratorios.