Two Chicago Bell Festivals in May

Friends, we have two bell festivals, one on change ringing and one on the carillon, coming up here in the month of May.

First, the 6th Annual Illinois Tower Bell Bash will take place May 19-20. Ringers will gather to ring changes (what else?) at the Mitchell Tower at the University of Chicago on Saturday and at St. Paul’s, Riverside on Sunday. Saturday’s ringing will have the silencer on, but if you ask Tom Farthing very nicely, he may allow you to watch the ringers in person, maybe even try it out! On Sunday the bells will ring out for everyone to hear. More details and contact information on the North American Guild of Change Ringers webpage.

Second, the Rockefeller Carillon New Music Festival will take place May 25-26. Carillonneurs from here and abroad will premiere sixteen compositions, some including collaborations with electronics and other instruments. Augusta Read Thomas’ Ripple Effects for 24 hands (yikes) will premiere on Friday at 6 pm. Fill your hearts and souls with new music for the bells, even meet the performers and composers. More details on the Rockefeller webpage.

I’ll try to make both of these–see you there!

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