Barenreiter Urtext edition: BA4082a. Georg Frideric Handel Athalia HWV 52. The oratorio Athalia tells the Old Testament story of the Queen Athalia. Handel composed it in 1733 for Oxford University where it was first performed later that year during the celebrations for the awarding of honorary degrees. As was frequently the case, Handel also carried on composing this work after the first performance. The Piano reduction includes the main version of 1733 plus an appendix of later versions.