The way things are

Life is a really hard game. The pieces keep falling out of those teeny little cars!

Friday, September 22, 2006

Tintinnabulation of the bells, bells, bells...

SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING: This blog is extremely nerdy and could be hazardous to your health. If you have never participated in various band or choir merriment, you should not partake.

With that said, I have some very exciting news. But first it is expedient that we investigate my history with handbells. Otherwise, my excitement may seem excessive.

When I was just a little kid in elementary school, the Sylvan Singers from Wood were the center of an assembly every year. Eh, the singing was great, but what I was interested in was the bell choir. Being a young musician, I appreciated how different an instrument the handbell was, and it absolutely intrigued me. I determined that someday I would play handbells.

My freshman year, I wasn't a part of the choir program, but I asked Mr. B. about playing bells and he plopped me into a training choir. I caught on quickly since I read music well, and I absolutely loved it. The following year I auditioned for Sylvan Singers--not because I was interested in choir, but because I wanted to be in the advanced bell group.

So the next three years I was in Tins (as we were called), and I even taught the training choir my last two years in high school.

So anyone that really knows me (or reads this blog) would know that I worship handbells and I pretty much know everything about them--how they work, how to fix them, how to clean them, proper technique, all style techniques (ha! I even invented my own!) , how to conduct a bell choir... I just love bells. (ahem I would like to start a bell choir at BYU but that's another story altogether).

Ok, we've established my history with this glorious instrument. Now, the trick was finding a bell choir here in Utah. I wasn't sure I was going to find one, as they are not very common. However, the Good Lord is merciful, and he definitely provided for me this time.

When in doubt, consult the internet. I went cybersurfing for bell choirs in the Provo/Orem area, and one popped up. The Utah Valley Handbell Choir. It looked promising, so I emailed the lady and what do you know, she responded telling me to come to a rehearsal.

There was one open spot. I got it. They needed someone on bass bells. I love bass bells. The church they rehearse in is on 700 E. I live off of 700 E. It worked out so perfectly.

So I went last night. We were sight-reading level 4 music. It was glorious. The perfect level of ringing for me--advanced enough to be challenging and fun, but not impossible. I fit right in. Their folders are absolutely PACKED with delicious music arranged by such wonderful people as Cynthia Dobrinski. 5 octaves of Malmark bells (oh I was so scared they would be those piece of crud tin cans that are Shulmerich), and I believe they own some bass chimes as well. The lower half octave of bass bells (from F#3 to C2 I believe) are aluminum, which makes ringing quickly a bit easier.

And everyone was so nice and funny! It was great. I'm so excited to be a part of this. Christmas season is coming up and I can't wait.


Blogger Klobas said...

Well I read it.

You warned me.

1:09 PM  
Blogger Frances said...

Well, you're going the opposite way of us... I'm glad you had fun!

Yay for handbells.

7:47 PM  
Blogger MustacheBoy said...

How's Karen? Is she still in charge? I haven't seen her in... four and a half years? And is Mark still on Bass? I had a fun year in that group, but alas, there's no time for it now. When I played we had chimes down to G3, but the high school Karen did stuff with had them to C2 and we borrowed them from time to time. Let me know when a gig is, I'd like to see the old group play again sometime.

8:16 PM  

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