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M. Dale Prins

Let us talk about handbells.

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I am sorry I have been largely absent lately -- and I now have a (small) backlog PMs that I should have answered long ago but have not -- but I made the final decision last month to:

(a) ditch any hope (for reasons both interesting and non-) I have for writing film reviews for pay greater than or equal to marginal, and thus

(B) spend the time I would have spent watching movies for the sole purpose of reviewing them doing something that

(b') pays better than film criticing (both per piece and per hour) and

(b'') is more interesting to me and

(b''') has less competition and besides

(b'''') I'm better at, which would be

(c ) handbell composing and

(c') arranging, where in about two weeks of work I've already had an offer for a piece written in four or five hours that's

(c'') not far removed to the money I made writing film reviews all of 2004, which, admittedly,

(c''') was in the lowish three digits,

(c'''') but still.

So. We need to talk more about handbells on this board, or else I will start to post less and less, if for no other reason than I'll be seeing fewer films.

I'll start the discussion. Who do you think is better: Cathy Moklebust or Kevin McChesney?

Dale

Edited by M. Dale Prins

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Well, for sheer volume I'd go with McChesney. But Cathy is prettier and she lives on a farm.

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Sorry, but you were practically begging for that.

But it did cause me to Google both Cathy Moklebust and Kevin McChesney.

I was with a handbell choir in 6th grade, but it was mainly for the Christmas production.

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don't know much (or in fact anything) about handbells, but every saturday i am forced to listen to this big clock tower thing near me that has this organ in it, it's an organ attached to these bells in the tower. a guy sits there and plays it by bashing these organ handles with his fists and then sometime after this a clanger thing hits a bell. normally he plays disjointed versions of 'jupiter', and 'fur elise'. oh, how i love it. every saturday. all day. its music especially suitable for older people to look round flower gardens to, and it has a very pre-60's British feel to it.

i am trying to drown it out with sonic youth as i write, but its still there.

still i have nothing against bells per se, handbells included.

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I'm a Dobrinski fan myself.

Here's what I think you should do: Dangle $5,000 in front of each arranger and tell 'em it's theirs if they'll do "Come on Ring Those Bells." I vote for the one who refuses -- or at least hesitates the longest.

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Hey Dale - good to have you back!

Stu,

does that mean that Carillon Man has quit doing it week days?

For the rest of you, the Carillon bells should not be confused with Handbells or church bells. They do make me appreciate how important sustain / dampening / vried note length and varied note volume are. When all are these are absent it makes one awful sound. Our town is 20% students and yet that is easily the worst form of noise pollution.

But handbells aren't like that (just to keep on topic - sorry for the Hijack Dale)

Matt

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re. the carillon man: (only relevant for residents of loughborough, uk. i.e. myself and page) - oh no, he still gets up there on thurdays.

and now back to the surprisingly productive handbell debate...

Edited by stu

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Dobrinski's fine, although her (and, for that matter, McChesney's) prolificacy makes her more works more up-and-down than, say, Moklebust's. Thus, because of higher highs and fewer lows, I vote Moklebust, and that vote is not influenced by her living in a town of 4,000 (Eagle Grove, Ia.) that is in the same high school athletic conference of the town of 6,000 I grew up in (Iowa Falls, Ia.).

Next question: Does the C#5/Db5 split hinder melody playing in the 4s and 5s (by dividing said melody line into two staves) or does it help melody playing (by making the melody line easier for individual ringers)?

Dale

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Well I think you have to rely on each individual being able to keep time accurately. If that is the case then there's really no reason why splitting, which thus enables the individual ringers to focus on their role within the group. Hence I'd be very much in the "Help" camp...but there's no blueprint.

Matt

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the carillion tower bells man is playing 'abba father' right now as i type.

clang, clang clang-clang-clang.

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Stu,

Check your pulse. I think that you may be in purgatory. Being cleansed by suffering.

Matt

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