Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin

Overtüren: Music for the Hamburg Opera

One of Europe’s top-notch ensembles has created an intriguing album of unfamiliar Baroque music. These overtures come from a time when an overture and a suite were synonymous. Five exciting multi-movement works catch your ear every bit as much as the famous suites of George Frideric Handel. In fact, Handel is here, with a lilting suite of obscure dances from his opera Almira. Georg Caspar Schurmann’s suite from Ludovicus Pius, with its swaggering rhythms that will knock you out, is followed later by pounding drum and tambourine and an innovative movement titled “Staccato.” Reinhard Keiser created a teaming world of musical ideas in his overture to “Le Ridicule Prince Jodelet.” Philipp Heinrich Erlebach’s Overture No. 4 sparkles, and Johann Schieferdecker’s “Concerts musicaux” makes an eloquent finish.