Philadelphia – Philadelphia’s internationally renowned period instrument ensemble, Piffaro the Renaissance Band, announces its final season of concerts under the leadership of Joan Kimball and Bob Wiemken, who will retire and pass the baton to their protégée Priscilla Herreid in June. This will be a hybrid season, with concerts taking place both in person and streaming online. Concert and ticket information are available at www.piffaro.org or by calling 215-235-8469.
The first concert program, A New Sun Rises (October 8-10), celebrates humankind’s inexhaustible capacity for new beginnings. Plagues and pestilences are nothing new, and composers historically wrote joyous works once such events had passed. Piffaro and guest vocal ensemble Variant 6 draw on a rich body of work from medieval and renaissance Europe and add a major new work commissioned from Philadelphia composer Kile Smith.
The glorious sounds composed for celebrations around the Christmas, Hannukah and Solstice traditions are on the program for Piffaro’s annual holiday concert, Let the Holidays Resound (December 10-12). Soprano Clara Rottsolk and tenor Jason McStoots join Piffaro’s versatile multi-instrumentalists.
March’s concert, Music from Austrian Court & Countryside (March 11-13), is devised by artistic director designate Priscilla Herreid. The all-instrumental program ranges from little known 16th century masters to the famed Heinrich Isaac to composers of the illustrious court of Archduke Ferdinand II. As a special treat, Matthew Glandorf will rekindle the spirit of celebrated Austrian organist and improviser Paul Hofhaimer.
The season wraps up with music from the famed traveling musical establishments of Holy Roman Emperor Charles V. The Musical Legacy of Charles V: The Spanish-Flemish Connection (May 13-15) includes composers from Charles’ native Low Countries (Jakob Obrecht, Alexander Agricola, Heinrich Isaac, Josquin des Prez) and his inherited kingdom of Spain (Christóbal de Morales, Mateo Flecha, Francisco Guerrero). The interactions of these two cultures produced a new international language of renaissance polyphony adopted throughout Europe – a musical legacy of legendary proportions.