This Month

Deadline for International Symposium Registration is June 15

Spaces Still Open for Distinctly Bronze West 2022

Video of the Month

Brian’s Music Notes


Like many non-profits, the COVID-19 pandemic has placed Handbell Musicians of America in the middle of difficulties, but therein lies an opportunity to

Renew Our Vision
Refresh Our Mission
Refocus Our Future Together

Handbell Musicians of America remains committed to uniting people into a diverse musical community that advances the art of handbell/handchime ringing through education, community, and communication.

Visit Campaign Page

National Events

GO HERE to find out more about all our national events.

August 1-6, 2022
Nashville, Tennessee

July 31-August 1, 2022
Nashville, Tennessee

International Symposium 2022

July 30-August 1, 2022
Nashville, Tennessee

October 6-9, 2022
Portland, Oregon

 Keep Your Member Information Updated

It is important that you keep your membership information current so that we may be sure we are getting you the information you need such as renewal notices, information pertinent to your Area, Overtones, etc. Please take a moment periodically to check that your member profile is up to date. Just CLICK HERE to log in, then choose “Update My Profile” in the “What Would You Like to Do” drop-down menu at the right of the welcome screen.

Become a Sustaining Partner

Upgrade your membership to SUSTAINING PARTNER and play an important role in ensuring the future of Handbell Musicians of America. As a SUSTAINING PARTNER

  • You are CONNECTED to the handbell community
  • You are IN PARTNERSHIP with other handbell musicians
  • You are NURTURED through education and resources

Learn More

hf-logo-260px Help build a pension for the Guild, by contributing to the HERITAGE FUND



Please note that any PAYMENTS sent to the Guild should now go to the following address:

Handbell Musicians of America
PO Box 221047
Louisville, KY 40252

This includes membership renewal, contributions, event registration payments, invoice payments, etc.

All GENERAL CORRESPONDENCE that DOES NOT include a check payment should be sent to:

Handbell Musicians of America
201 E. Fifth Street Suite 1900-1025
Cincinnati, OH 45202

Deadline for International Symposium Registration is June 15

Join us at the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center
Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.A. • August 1-6, 2022

Don’t miss this amazing event that comes to the U.S. only once every 16 years. International Handbell Symposium is a wonderful opportunity to mass ring under some of the finest international conductors. We need registrations in by June 15 to design floor placements and finalize certain aspects of the event.

Be sure to have a look at the Symposium Website to learn not only about the core event but also the two-day HMA National Seminar Experience and College Ring-In International for young musicians age 16-35. And new for this year’s event, youth ringers will be integrated into the full mass-ringing event at a special price.

When not in mass ringing rehearsal, attend workshops led by international instructors and shop vendor exhibits. PLUS, you’ll find plenty to do in Music City USA, Nashville, Tennessee, and help wind down the event with a lively party at the famous Wildhorse Saloon.

Symposium Website

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Spaces Still Open for Distinctly Bronze West 2022

October 6-9, Portland, Oregon
Carlos J. Ávila Báez, Conductor

Distinctly Bronze West registration opened with its usual first-day rush of registrations. But there are still spots available! So don’t wait and register today to be sure you’re in line to be assigned to your favorite spot.

Details & Registration

Conductor Carlos J. Ávila Báez has assembled a fabulous repertoire for you to ring:

  • Aglow, Jason W. Krug, Grassy Meadow, MGMH350013, L3
  • Waltz No. 2, Dmitri Shostakovich, arr. Gina Marie Williams, From the Top, MFM20710, L3
  • Mountain Journeys, Brian Childers, Choristers Guild, CGB1242, L4+
  • Humoresque, Antonín Dvorák, arr. Elo Kesküla, GIA, MGIG9213, L3
  • A Flight of Angels, Dale Jergenson, AGEHR, MAG35070, L6
  • Blanco y Azul, José I. Quintón, arr. Carlos J. Ávila, From the Top L4
  • Invictus, Matthew Compton, Hope Publishing, MHP2944, L4
  • Flower Duet, Leo Delibes, arr. Sandra Eithun, Beckenhorst, MBEHB596, L4
  • Contrasts, Eileen Laurence, AGEHR, MAG36012, L4
  • Ícaro, Félix S. Martínez, From the Top, L4+
  • O God, Beneath your Guiding Hand, William A. Payn, National Handbell Music, MNMP118, L3
  • Finale from Serenade for Strings, Pyotr Illyich Tchaivovsky, arr. Carlos J. Ávila, Jeffers, L5-6

About the Conductor

Carlos is an accomplished multifaceted musician, working professionally as a percussionist, orchestral conductor, music educator, and handbell specialist. He was appointed assistant principal percussionist of the Puerto Rico Symphony Orchestra in 2011 and has also performed with the Illinois Symphony Orchestra and the Peoria Symphony Orchestra. Since 2013 he has served as music director of the Puerto Rico Youth Symphony Orchestra.

Recognized internationally as a leader in the art of handbell ringing, Carlos has been a guest conductor or clinician in events such as the International Handbell Symposium, HMA’s Directors Seminar, Area Festivals and Handbell Exploration. In the 1990s, he and his friend Carlos E. Rivera were instrumental in the training, mentoring, and the subsequent formation of the first handbell ensembles in Venezuela. From 1993 to 2012, he was a founder and music director of Vivace, an advanced handbell ensemble that continually strived to push the boundaries of what bells were expected to achieve.

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Video of the Month

Natalia ‘Saw Lady’® Paruz plays “Hail the Day that Sees Him Rise” (hymn tune: LLANFAIR), arranged by Larry Sue, Choraegus Publishers. The original arrangement was for 2 bell ringers, but Natalia plays it as a solo, with 3 bells in each hand, a technique called ‘6-in-hand’. Piano: William Easterling Performed for Easter Service at Trinity Lutheran Church LIC. you can learn more about Natalia, who also plays the musical saw, at

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Brian’s Music Notes

with Brian Childers
Two Spirituals

arr. Diane McAninch
2 Octaves, Level 2+
Cabasa, Hand Drum,Tambourine

This set of spirituals will be accessible for many handbell groups. Requiring only two octaves of bells and rated 2+ in difficulty, these are a great investment for your bell group. The spirituals included are “My Lord, What A Morning” and “Rise Up, Shepherd, and Follow.” Each setting is creatively set and uses a generous portion of bell techniques for added interest.

Visit JW Pepper or Handbell World to purchase these for your handbell ringers.

While texts for spirituals develop and morph over time, geography, and circumstance, representative texts may be found below

My Lord, What a Morning

My Lord, what a morning, My Lord, what a morning,
Oh, my Lord, what a morning, When the stars begin to fall.

You will hear the trumpet sound To wake the nations underground
Looking to my God’s right hand When the stars begin to fall.

You will hear the sinner cry To wake the nations underground,
Looking to my God’s right hand When the stars begin to fall

You will hear the Christian shout To wake the nations underground,
Looking to my God’s right hand When the stars begin to fall.

Rise Up, Shepherd and Follow

There’s a star in the East on Christmas morn; Rise up, shepherd, and follow;
It will lead to the place where the Christ was born; Rise up, shepherd, and follow.

Follow, follow; Rise up, shepherd, and follow.
Follow the Star of Bethlehem; Rise up, shepherd, and follow.

Leave your sheep and leave your lambs; Rise up, shepherd, and follow;
Leave your ewes and leave your rams; Rise up, shepherd, and follow.

If you take good heed to the angel’s words; Rise up, shepherd, and follow;
You’ll forget your flocks, you’ll forget your herds; Rise up, shepherd, and follow.

Until next month,

Brian Childers
Music Adviser

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