Classes & Instructors

Beginning Weaving
Tackle those nasty accidentals and multiple-bell passages by learning and mastering the three-bell weave!  Bring your gloves, questions about massed and divisional music, and leave with the ability to easily play even the hardest part of any piece in the battery.

Beginning Treble Bells
Learn or re-learn the basics from C6 and up.  Gaining confidence with shelley and 4-i-h ringing can enhance the musical result for your choir and can make you a more versatile ringer.  Arrive with gloves and leave with dazzling treble skill!

Beginning Bass Bells
Learn and master safe techniques for lifting, ringing, damping, and putting down bass handbells.  For the purpose of this class, “bass bells” refers to instruments below C4.  Bring your gloves and leave with the confidence to sling those buckets!

Auditions:  Boon or Bane?
When it’s time to audition your ensemble, it is possible to foresee great new advancements, and terrible consequences.  Talk through ideas and learn from past successes with an experienced director of an auditioned community handbell choir who also works in church and school settings.  Bring your questions, concerns, suggestions, success stories, tales of woe, and be ready for a lively discussion.

Ensemble Skills 1
Learn tips and tricks for ringing a full complement of bells with less than a full choir. Ensemble ringing can be a special, difficult, challenging, diverting, and musically satisfying experience. Learn from one who has done and still does ensemble ringing and bring your ideas and questions.

Ensemble Skills 2
Take the next step in ensemble ringing with hands-on experience in weaving, displacement, passing to your neighbor and problem solving. We’ll also talk about adapting other music for ensembles, assigning, and polishing your performance. Prerequisite: Beginning Ensemble Class or experience with assignments of 3 or more bells requiring table damping.

Advanced Treble Bells
Ringers who attend this class should already be confident with shelley and 4-i-h, and be ready to try 6-i-h, traveling 4-i-h, and advanced assignment techniques to enhance musical performance and accuracy in the upper 5th, 6th, and 7th octaves.

Advanced Bass Bells
Ringers who attend this class should feel confident playing instruments C3-B3 and be interested in techniques for improving the visual presentation, musical success, and overall confidence of the “heavy metal” section. Bring your gloves and any bell you might have in the lower 6th or 7th octave.

Bell Trees
Learn techniques for assembling and ringing bell trees.  Several musical examples will be shown, and several pieces will be used in demonstration.  These will be available for purchase from an HIC member following the session.

Handbells in Worship
When we worship, we express reverence and adoration, we pray and we listen, we learn, we give, and we hopefully go out and tell others. Find new and creative as well as tried and true ways to make handbells an important part of a worship experience.

Ringing More Musically
Conductors often ask for things, and ringers often try to deliver.  Here are several reliable methods for making the musical product come alive for your audience, and your musicians.  Bring your gloves and leave with dozens of ideas to turn your next performance into your best performance.

The Difference Between a Good Ringer and a Great Ringer is a PENCIL!
Mark it!  How many directors have said that, and how many ringers have done that? Has it really made a difference? Perhaps we need a codified way to mark handbell music that is transferable from person to person, piece to piece, and ensemble to ensemble. Come learn a system of marking bell changes, choreography, and more that will change the way you approach a handbell rehearsal.

Know Thyself!
Learn to use a personality framework called “The Four Tendencies” to know yourself better and to be more productive, and effectively develop habits.  This framework can also be helpful to understand the tendency of those around you so that you can effectively communicate with and motivate them.