The cultivation of skill and diffusion of taste in music

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Piffaro presents Welcome the People: the Musical Legacy of the Reformation with Twin Cities’ acclaimed early music chorus, The Rose Ensemble

October 20, 2017 @ 7:30 pm - October 22, 2017 @ 5:00 pm

$29 - $49

Friday, October 20 @ 7:30PM, Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral
Saturday, October 21 @ 7:30PM, Presbyterian Church of Chestnut Hill
Sunday, October 22 @ 3:00PM, Christ Church Christiana Hundred (Wilmington, DE)

Pre-concert lecture by Matthew Glandorf one hour prior to concerts.

Tickets: $29-$49 (full-time students free with ID)
215-235-8469 or

Piffaro, The Renaissance Band, will present Welcome the People: the Musical Legacy of the Reformation, marking the 500th anniversary of a religious and cultural revolution. Concerts take place October 20th through 22nd in Philadelphia and Wilmington. Tickets are $29-$49 (full-time students free with ID), and are available at or by calling 215-235-8469.

On October 31, 1517, a monk named Martin Luther set in motion a spiritual movement that would transform sacred music. In this collaboration with the Twin Cities’ award-winning early music chorus, The Rose Ensemble, Piffaro will guide listeners through the first formative century of the Reformation.

“When Luther nailed his “Ninety-five Theses” to the door of All Saints’ Church in Wittenberg, his (probably apocryphal) hammer blows shattered sacred liturgical music tradition and laid the foundation of a brand new world of sacred sound and practice,” says Piffaro co-artistic director Bob Wiemkin (who attended a Lutheran seminary). “Luther was a great lover of music, calling it ‘the unshackled art’ and ‘the greatest treasure in the world’ after the Word of God. He himself penned some of the earliest of what became a Lutheran tradition of singable yet sophisticated hymns. The most recognized of these, of course, is Ein feste Burg (A Mighty Fortress), sometimes called ‘the battle cry of the Reformation.’”

Wiemken continues, “We will call the audience to attention with hammer blows and chart the first one hundred years of Luther’s influence, beginning with the founding and early development of the chorale and hymn in the hands of such composers as Johann Walther, Adam Gumpelzhaimer, Jakob Regnart and others. In the second half, we’ll celebrate the culmination of this artistic ferment in a reconstruction of a celebratory mass in grand style as it was practiced in German reformed churches in the early 17th century. Our model is the baptism of Prince Frederick of Württemberg and Barbara Sophia, Margravine of Brandenburg, which took place in Stuttgart in March of 1616. The event was a joyous, elaborate, and well-documented occasion. The great 6-voice Missa Prima by Leonhard Lechner will be the framework for this second half of the concert, which will conclude with Michael Praetorius’ magnificent triple-choir Te Deum.”

Listen to The Rose Ensemble perform Beatus Franciscus – Jerónimo de Aliseda (1548 – 1591) 

About The Rose Ensemble
Founded in 1996 by Artistic Director Jordan Sramek and now in its 22nd performance season, Saint Paul, MN-based professional chorus The Rose Ensemble produces musical performances and educational programs that connect each individual to compelling stories of human culture and spirituality from around the world. Each season, the group illuminates several centuries of rarely heard repertoire, bringing to modern audiences research from the world’s manuscript libraries and fresh perspectives on music, history, languages, politics, religion, and more. With ten critically acclaimed recordings and a diverse selection of concert programs, The Rose Ensemble has thrilled audiences across the United States, Europe, and Latin America with repertoire spanning 1,000 years and over 25 languages, including recent unique programs highlighting Maltese, Hawaiian, Middle Eastern, and Cuban repertoire.

Mr. Sramek is the 2010 recipient of the Chorus America Louis Botto Award for Innovative Action and Entrepreneurial Zeal and his ensemble is the recipient of the 2005 Margaret Hillis Award for Choral Excellence and took first place in both secular and sacred categories at the 2012 Tolosa (Spain) Choral Competition.

“A brilliant blend of scholarly intrigue and superior performance chops.” –Cleveland Plain Dealer


October 20, 2017 @ 7:30 pm
October 22, 2017 @ 5:00 pm
$29 - $49