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Which division should I select?

In addition to massed ringing, we have two divisions:  Blue (easier: levels 1-2+) and Gold (more difficult: level 3 & up.)    If you’re not familiar with the handbell music level system, you can find details here:

The massed ringing music for this festival ranges from level 1+ to level 3.

Both divisions will prepare eight selections – four massed ring and four division.

If eight selections are too many, you can choose to not play all of the pieces.  Opting out of the massed ring is also an option.  If you don’t play any of the massed ringing pieces, you can attend additional classes.  Note that if you choose to play only some of the selections (either division or massed), we ask that you remain in the room for the entire rehearsal and be respectfully quiet.

There are at least two schools of thought regarding which division to choose:

  1. We’ll never play music like division 2 (level/type/selection) normally, so let’s go for it! If you select this option, plan on lots of rehearsal time before Festival so that you’ll be ready to make music with the rest of the division.
  2. We want a relaxing festival experience, so let’s choose the easier music! You’ll still want to prepare by rehearsing.

Which school are you in?  Another thought to bear in mind – many musicians think that the best festival experience is when they are comfortable with the music before they arrive and are able to put full attention towards the conductor.

What’s BronzeFest & who should apply?

BronzeFest, led by John Behnke and Alex Guebert, presents a concert of up to six more advanced (level 3 and above) selections on Saturday afternoon.  Ensemble members are selected through an application process, and position assignments are made ahead of time.  Musicians purchase and rehearse the music ahead of the event, as there are only six hours of rehearsal prior to the concert!  BronzeFest rehearsals begin on Thursday night, and are then held during Gold division class periods, so musicians who are selected won’t attend any classes, and must select the Gold division.

Successful BronzeFest musicians have experience with music more difficult than level three, are willing to put in extra time before Festival to prepare the music, are eager to ring with new neighbors (and possibly in a new position), and look forward to making music with new conductors.


Mr. Blue Sky can be ordered from Sheet Music Plus by clicking  HERE.

Massed – Blue and Gold Divisions

Reflections on Kelvingrove
Over the Rainbow
The Bells Must Ring

Alex Guebert
arr. Jason Krug
arr. Chris Peck
John Behnke

Ringing Word MRW8274, Level 2-
Red River MRRBL5079, Level 2+
Hope MHP2686P, Level 3
JAB Publishing JAB051 3-5 Oct, Level 3- 
JAB Publishing JAB052 2-3 Oct, Level 1+

Blue Division

A Merry Heart
Behold, A Host Arrayed in White
Clarion Call
Cynthia Dobrinski
arr. John Behnke
Matthew Compton
Michael Joy
CGB471, Level 1+
Concordia 97-7634, Level 2+
AGEHR AG35371, Level 2+
Choristers Guild CGB864, Level 2+

Gold Division 

All Creatures of Our God and King
Fantasy on Restoration
Good Christian Men Rejoice
Mr. Blue Sky by Jeff Lynne of Electric Light Orchestra

arr. John Behnke
Brian Childers
Kimberly Strepka
arr. Alex Guebert

AGEHR AG36041, Level 3
GIA MGIG8492, Level 3+
From the Top 20327HB, Level 4
Sheet Music Plus H0.569435-SC000002533


Campanae Celebrare
Be Still My Soul
Angels We Have Heard on High
Spy Ring
Finale from Symphony No. 2 in D minor for Organ
Cathy Moklebust
William Payn
Alex Guebert
Kyler Brengle
arr. Tammy Waldrop
arr. Fred Gramann
Hope 2626, Level 4
Hope 1277, Level 4
Jeffers JHS9570, Level 5
AGEHR AG36056, Level 4
Red River RRBL5088, Level 3+
AGEHR AG46016J, Level 5