Hard at work…

From rehearsal on Sunday 10/20/13… Though handbell music typically requires 13 ringers, at least once every tour, MVR’s entire roster of 15 is utilized to make a piece come together.  It’s good to have extra hands!

Click the image to see full size…

groupshot 10-20-13


MVR’s Winter tour — it’s all coming together!

Drum roll please…. MVR’s Winter ’13 Tour is entitled “A Dash Through The Snow”!


Not just a line pulled from the iconic holiday song “Jingle Bells”, the concert also contains a rather unorthodox arrangement of that song which is set in 7/8 time, instead of the traditional 4/4.  It’s sure to introduce you to a classic song in a brand new way.

Promotional materials for this tour are going to press…or already ready for distribution! Our program is currently at the printer being assembled, and we received a large box of postcards this week, which feature all of our scheduled concert dates. These postcards get sent to all of our venues so they may easily promote the tour…AND we are known to hand them out on the fly to anyone who’s willing to take one! 🙂

Remember to visit the “Upcoming Concerts” section of our website http://www.mvringers.org to see where we’ll be playing. More updates soon!


MVR’s first blog post

Hey! MVR has a blog now! Neato! Handbells!!!!  EXCLAMATION POINTS!!!!

Posts will be current from here on out, but here is a repost of our end-of-summer update from September.  Enjoy!

September 16th, 2013

Greetings from MVR!

Rehearsals have once again started up, and we’re looking forward to another season of challenging and rewarding handbell performances….and hope YOU are too!

Though we don’t typically perform over the summer, MVR was nonetheless busy busy busy with other endeavors.

Festival/Conference 2013

The ensemble played their last Spring concert on Martha’s Vineyard in mid-June, then packed all their equipment and headed to UNH in Durham, NH for the biennial HMA Festival/Conference from June 27 – 30. We took classes (some of us even TAUGHT classes!), rehearsed an average of 4.5 hours per day, and performed in both a mini-concert and the final massed concert that concluded the event. Our mini-concert selection was the titular piece from our Spring repertoire, Carnivale, complete with multi-colored shirts, and a last-minute smattering of facial glitter. MVR was also present in several of the small ensemble mini-concert performances, with solos played by Rachel and Lisa, and a quartet played by “4/16ths MVR” ensemble Sue C., Colette, Diane, & BJ. All in all, we had a wonderful weekend filled with music, exercise (SO MANY STAIRS), ice cream, and friends.


We often joke that it’s just not an MVR tour unless a member is pregnant, and speak often of plans to form a bell ensemble in the future entirely made up of our offspring. Those who came to see us on our Spring tour know that Kim was our designated mommy-to-be (for the third time!) and wasn’t due until the end of June. However, Baby #3 had other plans, and decided to arrive the morning of our final concert on Martha’s Vineyard! Baby girl Marly was born on the island, and at least had the good sense not to be born in the MIDDLE of a concert. 😉 Congrats Kim!


MVR has been short a couple of ringers for the past year, and held auditions outside of their normal 2-year schedule this July to fill the spots. We had a great turnout and now have two new members: Lynne Batty and Evie Sessions! Lynne comes to us from the bronze level Hancock Carillon in Lexington, MA. Evie comes from several bronze level groups in NY, as she is moving to MA to study at Brandeis University this fall. You can read more about our new members soon by visiting the Meet the Ringers page. We eagerly welcome Lynne and Evie to our handbell family!


MVR gathered at the lakeside home of member Sue C. for the annual “MVR Party at the Lake” (yeah, we’re not that creative with the name), for a fun-filled and relaxing day of swimming, boating, tubing, grilling, and of course the traditional consumption of the infamous MVR BANANA BOATS.


We’ve been busy planning another great holiday season…playing both familiar venues and brand new locales. We rejoin our friends Bay Colony Brass in Burlington, MA, and will revisit long-time hosts in Rutland, MA, Marlborough, MA, and Leominster, MA. New engagements include an appearance with the Merrimack Valley Philharmonic Orchestra at the Rogers Center at Merrimack College in North Andover, and a solo concert at the Chelmsford Center for the Arts in Chelmsford, MA! See our Upcoming Concert page for more details.

Until then… Questions? Comments? Words of encouragement? Send us a message via our Contact page. We’d love to hear from you.

Happy Fall!

~ Merrimack Valley Ringers ~