Adoration In Sheba

Things to know handelListening and movement activities inspired by Handel’s “The Arrival Of The Queen Of Sheba”.


Parade For A Queen


  • This music was composed by Handel for his opera “Solomon”. When this music is played the Queen of Sheba arrives at King Solomon’s Palace for a visit. She was a very wealthy Queen who had lots of servants and possessions and when she went on a trip there would be hundreds of camels carrying her things and all those people.London (176)
  • We’re going to make up a procession and welcoming party for the Queen Of Sheba as she arrives in our school hall.


  • Pathways – find a partner and make a line two by two. Move along to the music, keeping in time and going in the direction of the leading twosome. Things To Know solomonEvery now and then the two at the front should move out to the side and the next two take over as leaders, then the original leaders join the back. The leaders should go in all directions around the room with the line staying the same length – no gaps opening up, no bunching. Try jogging, jumping, tiptoe-ing, trotting..still keeping the procession in line.


  • Adoration – the people at King Solomon’s court would have never seen such a splendid queen on a visit. What sort of things might they have done to show their adoration to the queen? Possibly bowing, clapping, waving, throwing flowers:London (177)
  1. Bow in interesting directions, use your arms to make your bows more flamboyant. Get into a line and do aMexican Bow” like a Mexican wave but with bowing instead of waving.
  2. Clap along with the music, keep in time but with different beats. Make up clapping rhythms to go with the music. Clap one at a time and together. Clap quieter and louder.
  3. Wave in different directions. Don’t just wave with your hands. Wave in shapes. Make your hands into interesting shapes to wave with. Wave at different heights and while you turn.Things To Know Arrival
  4. Pretend to throw petals. Exaggerate your actions. Think of different ways of throwing, moving your hands outwards from your body and letting go of what’s in them.



  • Half the class should be the Queen of Sheba’s Procession and the other half should be King Solomon’s courtiers welcoming her with the adoration gestures and moves you’ve worked on.
  • Swap groups so that everyone has a go at both jobs.
  • Try all the things we’ve done earlier.
  • The courtiers should make a pathway for the procession to walk through.
  • Think about these two things to make your procession more of a performance:
  1. How should the people in the procession react to the courtiers? Perhaps by waving in a royal way, or ignore then and look straight ahead. What do you think?Things To Know London
  2. This music lasts for three whole minutes. How will you vary the performance so that it isn’t just three minutes of the same thing over and over again? Perhaps have sections of the procession with no courtiers, or perhaps now and then the procession could stop to acknowledge the crowd. Perhaps the courtiers will react in different ways for different sections of the music. The music has oboes and strings. Perhaps when the oboes play on their own, something different could happen.

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