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Early Music in Italy: from the Trecento to the Baroque with the Folger Consort

Join us for a program organized in collaboration with the Folger Consort of Washington DC as we take a closer look at the history of music in Italy from the 1300s to the late 1600s.

Robert Eisenstein, Artistic Director at the Folger Consort, will lead a special presentation introducing musical concepts and tracing the path from such great composers as Palestrina, Monteverdi and Corelli and their historical and literary counterparts including authors like Machiavelli, Dante and Boccaccio.

This program will also feature a performance by the early music ensemble-in-residence at the Folger Shakespeare Library, together with special guests Piffaro, The Renaissance Band.


Photo credits: The Concert (1623, oil on canvas by Gerard van Honthorst, National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC)


in collaboration with

folger logo


Embassy of Italy
3000 Whitehaven St NW
Washington, DC 20008


Please Note



Due to new safety regulations, we are not allowed to add extra seats to the auditorium or let anyone stand. A registration is not a guarantee of a seat as these are assigned on a first-come first-served basis. Doors close at event start-time. Ticket availability date subject to change.




Robert Eisenstein


Robert Eisenstein is a founding member and program director of the Folger Consort. In addition to his work with the Consort, he is the director of the Five College Early Music Program in Massachusetts, where he teaches music history, performs regularly on viola da gamba, violin, and medieval fiddle, and coordinates and directs student performances of medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque music.

He is an active participant in Five College Medieval Studies and served as Music Director for the Five College Opera Project production of Francesca Caccini’s La liberazione di Ruggiero. He has a particular interest in the use of computer technology in the service of music and enjoys teaching a course calledFun with Music and Technologyat Mount Holyoke College. Eisenstein is the recipient of Early Music America’s Thomas Binkley Award for outstanding achievement in performance and scholarship by the director of a college early music ensemble.


Piffaro, The Reinassance Band


Piffaro, The Renaissance Band delights audiences 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.

Its ever-expanding instrumentarium includes shawms, dulcians, sackbuts, recorders, krumhorns, bagpipes, lutes, guitars, harps, and a variety of percussion — all careful reconstructions of instruments from the period. Under the direction of Artistic Directors Joan Kimball and Bob Wiemken, the world renowned pied-pipers of Early Music present an annual subscription concert series in the Philadelphia region, tour throughout the United States, Europe, Canada and South America, and appear as performers and instructors at major Early Music festivals.

Recordings are a significant part of the ensemble’s work, and 18 CDs have been released since 1992, including 4 on the prestigious label Deutsche Grammophon/Archiv Produktion. Piffaro has been active in the field of education since its inception in 1980 and has been honored twice for its work by Early Music America, receiving the “Early Music Brings History Alive” award in 2003, and the Laurette Goldberg “Lifetime Achievement Award in Early Music Outreach” in 2011.

In June 2015, the American Recorder Society honored Piffaro with its Distinguished Achievement Award.


  • Organizzato da: IIC Washington
  • In collaborazione con: Folger Consort