There is some uncertainty about precisely which year, but 2011/2012 sees the 400th anniversary of the birth of Andreas Hammerschmidt (1611/12-1675), one of the most important masters of the early German Baroque. His vocal works are known to the wider public today through just a few pieces such as “Machet die Tore weit”. Hammerschmidt ranks alongside the greatest Protestant-Lutheran church music composers including Schütz, Schein, Rosenmüller, and Bach. His output encompasses a wide range of the most varied musical forms: sacred concertos and cantatas, motets and instrumental pieces, and secular vocal works. Like Schütz, Hammerschmidt’s music is also strongly text-inspired and yet at the same time, musically artistic. This album with the ensemble Gli Scarlattisti presents Andreas Hammerschmidt’s vocal compositions for Advent in a thematic and theologically-liturgically arranged sequence, a revealing complement to a Latin Magnificat setting by his contemporary Johann Rosenmüller (1619-1684). The vocal ensemble Gli Scarlattisti was founded in 1995 by Jochen M. Arnold and comprises professional singers from Germany and Switzerland.
"... a brilliant program, and beautiflly sung and played...!
Peter Lowen - American Record Guide - March/April 2013
"This is the first of two Carus recordings to mark the 400th anniversary of the birthday of Andreas Hammerschmidt. The works are choosen from his considerable printed output, topically including many for Advent and Christmas, combining solo voices, a brightly-voiced choir and a wide range of instrumentalists. The balance is very well managed, and the tempi well chosen.... Since it is about time Hammerschmidt’s music was more widely performed (it works well with choirs), anyone looking for an alternative (or perhaps a complement) to Schütz should definately buy this recording."
Brian Clark - The Early Music Review 151 - December 2012