Choral music by Johann Adolf Hasse
Johann Adolf Hasse was probably the most famous composer in Europe in the second third of the 18th century, and acquired the nickname “il divino Sassone” (the divine Saxon). He achieved his fame above all through more than 60 operas, which represent the apotheosis of absolutism shortly before the dawn of a new age. With the premiere of the opera Cleofide in Dresden in 1731, Hasse's connections with the Saxon court intensified; as court Kapellmeister from 1734 to 1763, he took musical life there into a golden age. Hasse's sacred music, which encompasses masses (including the Mass in G minor composed in 1783 as his own epitaph), Requiem compositions, settings of litanies, psalms, a Te Deum, Marian antiphons, solo motets and oratorios, is expressive and sounds beautiful. These works can easily be tackled by today's choirs, and are suitable for church and concert alike. A Selected Edition of his compositions is published by Carus.