Tuesday July 5, 2011
Summer 2011 has arrived and that means festival time for the Emanuel Ringers! Today, The ER2's met at church at 8am. Soon we were on our way to Kutztown University for this years Area II Festival. After a long car ride we arrived at the university. We went into the ringing hall and set up our table. After a quick lunch, we returned to the ringing hall for the opening bell, follows by our first massed rehearsal. It was cool to hear the music we were used to playing by ourselves in massed. It sounds pretty epic. When rehearsal was over, we went to our first class called "it's new, it's crazy'. We learned all kinds of new bell techniques that are emerging into the Handbell world. The most interesting one had to be when you ring the bell, bring it up to your mouth and say waw-waw. The bell makes that sound as well! Also, the teacher Mike, showed us if you ring a bell and then dip it in water it stops the sound automatically. After class, we had dinner in the dinning hall then it was off to division B rehearsal, our smaller massed group. After rehearsal, we had another class in which we learned how to play The Cup Game. It teaches rhythm, timing, and speed, which is essential to Handbell ringing. We also had a lot of fun with it. When class ended we had some free time and then went to bed after a long first day at the festival.
Wednesday July 6
Day two stared out with an early wake up call and breakfast. Then we all gathered in the ringing hall for massed rehearsal. During this rehearsal we practiced our procession for the concert. There is a video somewhere on here. Then we had another division B rehearsal. Before lunch we had another class called How am I supposed to ring that? We learned some interesting ways to ring many bells quickly. After lunch, we had another massed rehearsal and another division B rehearsal. Before dinner, we had another class in which we learned to play speed stackers. It's this game where you stack cups in triangle formations really fast. The game helps with hand eye coordination, witch helps with bells. After dinner our director played a solo concert for us. He was very good and played songs we were familiar with like Amazing Grace and As the deer. He also played a song with five different bell trees. Following the concert, there was an ice cream social. During the social, there was a speed stacking competition as well as a cup game competition. Sonja got to the top six. It was a fun way to hang out with our new friends and test the new skills we have learned here at the festival. After an intense competition, we went to bed to prepare for the concert tomorrow.