Last week, the early music ensemble Ciaramella enchanted listeners at the Getty Center with a performance of medieval sacred and secular music that featured the rare and lovely ciaramella, or Italian folk shawm. This week, Ciaramella’s director, Adam Gilbert, and USC Thornton Baroque Sinfonia take us on a musical journey into the mountains of Italy with zampognaro Guido Iannetta in a program titled “Make a Joyful Noise: From Shepherds’ Pipes to the Voices of Angels.” So, as Regis would say, for one million dollahs, what is a zampognaro? A. An Italian dessert. B. An Italian traffic cop. C. An Italian red wine. D. An Italian bagpiper. Go ahead, ask the audience. Whoops! No, not B! The answer is D, and Iannetta, a premier bagpiper, is also an instrument maker and — yes — forest ranger from Italy’s Abruzzi region. From the time of the first Noël, the zampognari have been descending from the Italian hills, announcing the coming of Christmas with bagpipes and folk oboes. Ianetta and Gilbert demonstrate these instruments in a lecture/concert “juxtaposing rustic pipes and high-art music.” Plus, there’ll even be a sing-along with the famous piper’s carol and Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus.” Make a Joyful Noise: From Shepherds’ Pipes to the Voices of Angels USC, Alfred Newman Recital Hall, 3616 Trousdale Pkwy., L.A.; Fri., Dec. 7, 7 p.m. lecture; 8 p.m. concert; free. (213) 740-2584 or www.usc.edu/music.
—Mary Beth Crain