Wish I were there!
It's awfully hard to find a live performance of Messiah in my Godforsaken wasteland. I have been to three singalongs in the last 20 years, and one live performance. (I attended another live performance, but it was in the Glendale area; wonderful bass singer, actually a former schoolmate.)
I enjoyed them all. The local live performance was... memorable. I don't know how to describe it in print. First, the alto was so wonderfully good she brought chills and tears. Splendid, simply splendid.
What was odd was the way the chorus handled the long-held notes. If you know the oratorio, you know what I mean. For instance, when they sing "For unto us a child is born," that last word is drawn out and played over a number of notes — "Bo-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o...." etc.
Well, instead of doing that, this chorus would sing "Bo-da-da-da-da-da-da-da-da-da..." etc.
I don't doubt it was easier to sing, but the effect, if you're accustomed to the other way, was... a bit startling.
Still, I enjoyed the presentation.