Messiah everywhere.

And interesting musicians are doing it. The baroque group Tempesta di Mare collaborates with the Brandywine Singers at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at St. Paul's Church in Chestnut Hill and 2 p.m. next Sunday at West Chester's United Methodist Church. You might call it the Handel specialist version, with soprano Julianne Baird improvising vocal ornaments. Other soloists: Emily Bullock, Stephen Ng, and Randall Scarlata.


. And the Philadelphia Orchestra's


at 2 p.m. next Sunday has British early-music specialist Matthew Halls conducting, with soloists Erin Wall, Sasha Cooke, Bruce Sledge, and Joshua Hopkins. 215-893-1999 or



- David Patrick Stearns

Golden Tuesday. The Philadelphia Chamber Music Society quietly established the local gold standard for great service two decades ago. Want to exchange a ticket? No problem. Can't decide between middle or late Beethoven string quartets? PCMS is happy to guide you. It also understands the value of making patrons feel appreciated, and will do so Tuesday by selling tickets to 12 concerts for $10 each. Among the deals are venerable pianist Seymour Lipkin, Met Opera tenor Matthew Polenzani, Emanuel Ax with musicians of the Philadelphia Orchestra, and the Orion Quartet with Peter Serkin. The phone and online sale is 9 to 5; online continues till 8. "Many concerts sell out before noon," warns artistic director Miles Cohen. But if you miss out, it's no great tragedy. PCMS tickets top out at an endearingly wee $24. 215-569-8080,

- Peter Dobrin

Treasures. To the casual eye, Brickbat Books looks like your average, incredibly well-curated arts-and-literature, out-of-print, seems-like-from-a-

different-era bookshop, a guardian of Plath, Kerouac, and Agee. But in fact, the shop on Fabric Row just below South Street is also a trove of volumes on music - Reich, Messiaen, Harry Partch - plus LPs like the seminal Smithsonian Anthology of American Folk Music, Yé-yé girls of '60s French pop, and cult street musician Moondog. www.brickbatbooks. - P.D.

A Baltic(ish) Christmas. You know it's a holiday concert when the enterprising new-music choir the Crossing dispenses with the microtones and delivers a program of predominantly lush harmonies - though it's music you didn't know you wanted to hear, because it didn't exist until recently. The Baltic element is Toivo Tulev's And then in silence there with me be only you (got all that?). The most familiar name is British composer Judith Weir, represented on the program by Drop down, ye heavens. And then? Think of it as a Secret Santa concert: You have no idea what comes next. 8 p.m. Friday at Presbyterian Church of Chestnut Hill.

- D.P.S.