News Release: Norwich University bell concerts kick off July 5

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By Jacque Day | Norwich University Office of Communications              Media Downloads

June 30, 2014

NORTHFIELD, Vt. – Bring a picnic and a lawn chair to the Upper Parade Ground on the beautiful campus of Norwich University and enjoy free afternoon outdoor concerts performed on the Charlotte Nichols Greene Memorial Carillon.

The largest bell in a carillon plays the lowest note and is called the “bourdon.” Norwich’s bourdon is four feet in diameter and weighs 3,500 pounds.Carillon Fun Fact
Concerts will be held rain or shine on five consecutive Saturdays from July 5 to August 2, and all concerts begin at 1 p.m. Each original, hour-long performance will be followed by a demonstration and an opportunity to tour the bell tower.

Programs highlight a variety of classical, folk, traditional, and contemporary compositions.

The largest musical instruments in the world, carillons are played with both hands and feet. Musicians perform by striking levers stoutly wired to the various clappers of a tower’s many bells. Norwich’s carillon, one of only two such instruments in the state of Vermont, comprises 47 bells, the largest of which weighs 3,500 pounds.

2014 Carillon Concert Schedule

July 5: George Matthew Jr. (Middlebury College and Norwich University)

July 12: Amy Heebner (Albany, N.Y.)

July 19: Elena Sadina and Sergei Gratchev (Belgian Carillon School) perform as a duo

July 26: Elena Sadina and Sergei Gratchev (Belgian Carillon School) perform individually

August 2: Tatiana Lukyanova (New Britain, Conn.)

Fun facts about carillons:

  • The art of bell-tuning was perfected in northern Belgium in the 15th century. Norwich’s bells were cast and tuned at foundries in Belgium and France.
  • Every carillon has a name. Norwich’s is called the Charlotte Nichols Greene Memorial Carillon.
  • To be considered a “true” carillon, the instrument must have at least 23 bells. Norwich’s original carillon had 36 bells, and in 1959 it was expanded to 47.
  • The largest bell in a carillon plays the lowest note and is called the “bourdon.” Norwich’s bourdon is four feet in diameter and weighs 3,500 pounds.

For more information about the concert series, contact Jacque Day at jday1@norwich.edu, (802) 485-3329 or (802) 661-4012.

Media Contact

Daphne Larkin
Norwich University Assistant Director of Communications

dlarkin@norwich.edu
Office: (802) 485-2886
Mobile: (802) 595-3613.

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