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   The Twelfth Tone
Area 12 Newsletter
February 2015
In This Issue
From the Chair
Southern Nevada
San Francisco Bay Area
Northern Nevada
Southern California
LA Metro
Central California
Northern California
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Start each rehearsal with a skill drill. Maybe there is a special articulation in one of your pieces that needs technique polishing, or a complicated rhythm to break down without worrying about pitches. If your rehearsal time is too limited, put some drill ideas in the front of each ringer's folder for them to use if they arrive early. Remember, practice makes permanent! Practice well for best results!

Passages,  the album, epitomizes The Raleigh Ringers 25-year musical journey, featuring classical arrangements, cutting-edge original compositions and signature rock arrangements by The Rockin' Raleigh Ringers on the group's second double CD.


Over 100 minutes of music!


 To buy your copy,

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There is something for everyone in handbells! All you have to do is say "Yes!"
Message from the Chair - Michèle Sharik


Hi there, Area 12!  


As I write this, I am on a plane returning from the Handbell Musicians of America Master Series, which was held in Cincinnati. The Area 12 Board was well-represented at the event; your Chair-Elect Tessique Houston, and Northern Nevada Regional Coordinator Barb Walsh were also there.

I am totally exhausted, but in a good way! The Guild has so many great events for members to attend and I know I always learn SO MUCH at every event, whether I am performing, teaching, or "just" attending. If you have never attended a Guild event, I encourage you to scroll down and find an event in your region, whether it's a workshop, a ringing event, or a concert, and then attend it! Who knows? Maybe you'll be inspired to try something new - a new piece, a new wardrobe/costume choice, or a new technique. You never know until you GO! You won't be sorry! 

Until next month, all my best to you,


Michèle Sharik



Communiqué - Barbara Meinke, Communications Director
Barbara Meinke


I love to bring special features to you, so let's take a trip abroad...to Korea...and hear from Ellen Laszlo (LA Metro) about the International Symposium 2014. Maybe it will inspire you to attend in 2016 in Vancouver, Canada!



Have you ever considered the challenge of following a massed ringing director during rehearsal when you do not speak the same language? (Come-to-think-of-it, yes, I suppose many of us wonder sometimes if we DO speak the same language!) Imagine, though, the director uses NO words because there's no time for translation. You have to watch like crazy and maybe even watch the tables around you to see what you're supposed to do. If you like that kind of a challenge (or are simply curious), read on!


The International Handbell Association promotes ringing programs throughout the world in much the same way as Area 12 contributes to the development of bell ringing in our local communities. Every two years, an international handbell symposium is hosted by one of the seven participating guilds (of which our guild is a member) and every time members of Area 12 travel to ring "international" bell music with new and old friends from around the globe.


In August 2014, the International Handbell Symposium was held in Jeju, Korea. The symposium ran for five days during which there were massed rehearsals, workshops, solo concerts and shared meals - much the same as we do at our regional and area ringing events.  The Area 12 participants in 2014 (who contributed to this story) were Dave and Dian Ruder (Bay Area), and Doug and Judy Lewis, Susan Hitch and Ellen Laszlo (LA Metro). 



The international event was also different from our Area 12 events. We rang a much more diverse repertoire of music; we communicated in multiple languages; we went on a local half day tour together; and our workshops brought together culture, ringing technique and various insights into how handbell musicians promote programs around the world. Our local tour included a temple in a cave, a green tea plantation and a bonsai garden. In our workshops we learned to make traditional Korean "knot" necklaces, tried our hand at K-pop dance, and enjoyed presentations from handbell teachers and ringers from different schools, churches and community organizations on nearly every continent. Many handbell music composers and arrangers were in attendance as we rang massed music with the distinct sounds of each of the guilds. 


Here are some of the reasons our group from Claremont United Church of Christ attends the International Handbell Symposium every 2 years:

  • Making new friends and visit with friends from years past
  • Ringing together while we rehearse in 4+ languages creates an atmosphere where you really have to watch
  • Seeing the sights in a country you might not otherwise visit (we have so many terrific memories of our encounters doing laundry!)
  • Learning difficult music that sometimes sounds funny and you probably will never play again
  • Attending cultural classes covering history, art and music
  • Meeting composers, arrangers and directors from around the world
  • Taking home a bag full of bell trinkets and tchotchkes
  • Eating food. There's always a lot of really different food.
  • Encountering young people - many school groups attend the international symposium and it is truly awesome to see them perform! Their discipline and focus is amazing.
  • Dancing with the Puerto Ricans, always a vivacious group!
  • And finally, feeling relief after praying that those big black bell cases will come down the baggage claim slide before the belt stops and happiness to have your choir chimes, even if TSA did open the case upside down!

And here's how you too can join the fun! If you've ever considered attending an international handbell symposium, perhaps your best opportunity is in 2016. Visit the British Columbia Guild of English Handbell Ringers for more information about the event planned next year in Vancouver, BC. www.ihs2016vancouver.ca  Hope to see you there!

So. Nevada - Alison Pruett, Regional Coordinator


Techniques Workshop

and Concert


March 28, 2015

The Church of Jesus Christ

of Latter-Day Saints

10070 Azure Dr

 Las Vegas, NV 89149


hosted by Harmony Handbells

This event is endorsed by the Handbell Musicians of America. 


All skill levels are welcome. Find registration information linked to the calendar date on our website by clicking the event name above.


Please come join other ringers from Southern Nevada!


Alison Pruett

Southern Nevada Regional Coordinator



For information on Southern Nevada's concerts, events, and other opportunities, click here. 

San Francisco Bay Area


2015 Bay Area Spring Ring

Saturday April 11, 2015

(Intense Ring begins Friday, April 10)

Valley Church

10885 North Stelling Road

Cupertino, California


This year's Bay Area Spring Ring has SO many

special features that you won't want to miss:




Handbell Musicians of America's

Past President
Lee Afdahl
is the featured conductor




Special Youth Track!

This year we're offering special class sessions just for youth taught by Area 12's own Barbara Walsh. Registered ringers between the ages of 10 and 18 will have the opportunity to sign up for the youth track and attend two classes where they will work with Barbara on perfecting Michael Glasgow's arrangement of Katy Perry's 

All the way from Portland, Oregon, Handbells Unlimited! will perform a special lunchtime concert! Here's a preview:

"Hernando's Hideaway" - Handbells Unlimited!

Oh! And the Intense Ring is just as intense this year with not two, but three repertoire selections under the direction of Lee Afdahl.


Additional class offerings will include Making Your Ensemble Performance Ready taught by Beth Davidson and David Jordan of Handbells Unlimited!, The Basics of Four-in-Hand with Lisa Traughber of Opus Handbell Ensemble, a special drumming class featuring Malmark cajons taught by Alex Guebert, and a Malmark bell maintenance class taught by Dolores Rhoads. In addition, Lee Afdahl will lead a Reading Session in the morning and a Director's Workshop in the afternoon.


The early bird deadline is February 15th,

so don't wait to register!


Download registration forms for both the Spring Ring and the Intense Ring from the Handbell Ventures website now and postmark them by the early bird deadline.


And watch for updates at handbellventures.org/springring or sign up for email updates with the Spring Ring Registrar by contacting



This Handbell Ventures event is
endorsed by Handbell Musicians of America.

We are seeking a
San Francisco Bay Area

Regional Coordinator!

If you are interested,

please contact Michèle Sharik


For information on San Francisco Bay Area's concerts, events,
and other opportunities, click here.

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International Symposium 2016
click the image for all the details!
No. Nevada - Barb Walsh, Regional Coordinator




Please mark your calendars for the

April 25, 2015
South Reno
United Methodist Church

If you have class suggestions, please email me with your ideas.
More details coming soon!

This event is  endorsed by the Handbell Musicians of America.

Tuesday, May 26, 2014
South Reno
United Methodist Church
free concert open to the public at 12:15 p.m.

This event is  sponsored by the Handbell Musicians of America.


Barbara Walsh

Northern Nevada Regional Coordinator



For information on Northern Nevada's concerts, events,

and other opportunities, click here. 

So. California - Kari Jacobs, Regional Coordinator



April 24-25, 2015

 featuring Margi Zearley
Temecula, CA

  This event is sponsored by the Handbell Musicians of America.


See the Nov. issue of The Twelfth Tone for a repertoire list and watch for registration information by postcard and linked to the calendar date on our website!


Blessings and happy ringing,


Kari Jacobs

Southern California Regional Coordinator



For information on Southern California's concerts, events,
and other opportunities, 
click here. 

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LA Metro - Scott Leggett, Regional Coordinator

Greetings, ringers!


If you're like me January has gone by quickly and has been a busy time planning for the "second half" of the ringing season, even though it seems September was just yesterday!


As you do your planning, please save this date!


LA Metro Spring Ring

May 2, 2015


The Master's College

Santa Clarita, CA


This event is sponsored by the Handbell Musicians of America.

Registration with repertoire lists will be out very soon and linked to the calendar date on our website. The event will be a dual track day - one for bronze level massed ringing and a director's workshop for newer or aspiring directors.

 Lastly, in thinking of planning for the fall of 2015, I am looking for a venue for our Fall Ringer's Workshop and I would like to host the event in Orange County. If you have a suggestion, or better yet a venue, to offer up, please let me know. Our area is very large and giving our OC folks a local place for an event would great.




Scott Leggett

Los Angeles Metro Regional Coordinator



For information on LA Metro's concerts, events,
and other opportunities, click here.

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Central California - Lori Smith, Regional Coordinator
Lori Smith

Hi, CenCal folks!

There's a lovely Spring Ring coming up in April, in the Central Coast town of San Luis Obispo.  As you may remember from the Area 12 Conference in June, SLO is a beautiful location.  Mary Balkow will be the clinician.  I hear she has some surprises for us!  Come join the fun.


Saturday, Apr 18, 2015
8:00am - 4:30pm
Zion Lutheran Church
1010 Foothill Boulevard, San Luis Obispo, CA

This event is sponsored by Handbell Musicians of America.

Registration Deadline is April 3, 2015
Contact: Shirley Werner, shipley712@sbcglobal.net, for registration or more information

Please bring your own yummy brown bag lunch. Beverages will be provided.

"Chanson"  arr./Kenneth Lowenberg
2-3 Octaves
AG46028  4-6 Octaves and is compatible with 2-3 octave edition
Level 2

"A Song of Thanksgiving" arr/Michael Helman
Lorenz 20/1734L  
2-3 Octaves
Level 2

Calypso on "He Leadeth Me" arr./Tammy Waldrop
Agape 2609  3-6 Octaves
Level 3-

Plus, Mary is bringing a percussion piece called, "Stompin."
Suggested instruments are Dust Pan, Crutch, Washboard, Tin Can, Two Plastic Bowls, Kazoos, Slide Whistles,  and Two Tire Irons! I've not heard it yet, but the description sounds wildly fantastic! I love this "thinking-outside-the-box."  Oooh, I recall St John's Lutheran Church in Bakersfield used a hammer-and-spike sound effect just a few years ago. Let your imagination lead you!
Hope to see you there!
Lori Smith
Central California Regional Coordinator

 For information on Central California's concerts, events,

and other opportunities, click here. 
No. California - Nancy Schmitt, Regional Coordinator
Nancy Schmitt

Dear Handbell Musicians,

February is here and maybe you are wondering what ringers, bells, and Valentine's Day all have in common?  Answer: Celebrating Valentine's Day through bell ringing!


You have probably heard of singing Valentines mostly done by barbershop quartets who will go out into the community and sing for couples and then present them with a red rose. You may have heard about ringing Valentines where small bell ensembles go out into the community as well and ring a few love songs (or ring and sing) and then perhaps present the happy couple with a red rose or pink carnation. Sometimes there is a fee involved. Sometimes you just do it for free. The ringing Valentine is a cool way to spread the art of handbell ringing, make a few couples very happy, and perhaps earn a little money on the side. So, find some couples needing some special attention on Valentine's Day, check your closet for red attire, grab a few ringers, stop by the florist for some red roses or pink carnations and make someone happy, including yourself!

As always, if you have a workshop, concert, or other bell event that you would like posted on the calendar for Northern California, please contact me. As your Northern California Regional Coordinator I am here to serve you. Happy Valentine's Day!




Nancy Schmitt

Northern California Regional Coordinator  

For information on Northern California's concerts, events,
and other opportunities, click here!
Hawaii - Karen Carlisle, Regional Coordinator
Karen Carlisle

Aloha, all!

I have been up to my ears in music selection and getting everything ready for my SIX handbell groups! I am adding a group at Central Middle School too and I am so excited! It's a great time working with the kids of such different age levels! 

I have also been searching for old bells and am completely fascinated by this! Royal Elementary School started out with a set of White Chapel handbells that are now displayed in their front office. There is a much bigger story of this coming!

I visited Church of the Crossroads in Honolulu last week and did a little bit with them and their vocal choir. They have a small set of Petit-Fritsen handbells (no longer being made). They are old but fascinating! Some of them need a bit of maintenance and if anyone can help me I would love it.  To those that are not familiar with these, back in the day they were used in the Catholic churches along with the chanting. We don't generally use them now for more than a single line melody with a vocal choir or we use them to highlight a part with our regular bell set. I am now fascinated with these too! I had never seen one before!

Is anyone interested in learning more about maintenance for Malmark or Schulmerich handbells? Please contact me about this possible FREE opportunity.

Karen Carlisle
Hawaii Regional Coordinator

For information on Hawaii's concerts, events,
and other opportunities, click here.