Piffaro, The Renaissance Band, will present its holiday concert, “Es Ist Ein Ros,” with guest artist Jessica Beebe, on Dec. 17 at Immanuel Church Highlands in Wilmington. Beebe will add her voice to Piffaro’s diverse array of over 40 Renaissance-period instruments.
With Piffaro, Beebe turns from a cutting-edge repertoire to music that has stood the test of four centuries. The traditional German Christmas has ancient roots in home, family and communal music making. “The famous holiday hymn ‘Vom Himmel Hoch da komm ich her’ (‘From Heaven on High I Come’) was written and composed by Martin Luther himself for his own family’s Christmas Eve devotions,” according to Joan Kimball, artistic co-director of Piffaro. “In that spirit, Piffaro’s holiday program will revolve around ‘Von Himmel Hoch’ and two even more ancient hymns: ‘Resonet in laudibus’ (‘Let Praises Resound’) and ‘In dulci jubilo’ (‘In Quiet Joy’). It will also include one of the most beloved German carols, ‘Es ist ein Ros’ entsprungen’ (‘Lo How a Rose E’r Blooming’), in a simple setting by the masterful Michael Praetorius.” Audiences will be invited to join in the singing. “Es ist ein Ros” marks the second concert in Piffaro’s series that explores the Reformation and Counter-Reformation in Germany and Eastern Europe.
Piffaro, the Renaissance Band, has delighted audiences around the world for more than three decades with highly polished recreations of the rustic music of the peasantry and the elegant sounds of the official wind bands of the late Medieval and Renaissance periods. It brings the sounds of the Renaissance to life with its ever-expanding instrumentarium of shawms, dulcians, sackbuts, recorders, krumhorns, bagpipes, lutes, guitars, harps and a variety of percussion—all careful reconstructions of instruments from the period, and the only professional collection of its kind in North America.
â€‹For tickets and information about the Piffaro concert, visit www.piffaro.org, or call (215) 235-8469.