Bronze Workshops

There are three workshop sessions for each ringing level. Below are the workshop codes, titles, and clinicians for each workshop offered in the timeslot. 

Click on the workshop title and clinician name to be taken to the detailed descriptions and bios.

Here is a legend for the codes:
BR – Bronze
D – Directors
G – General and non-ringing

Friday, June 2, 2023
10:00 to 11:00 a.m.

Saturday, June 3, 2023
12:45 to 1:45 p.m.

Bronze Workshop Descriptions 

Workshop Description  Clinician

 CB11 Sight Ringing

Tips and approaches for improving sight reading. We will explore sight ringing strategies by reading through L2 and L2+ music.

 Mark Matterson
D1 Adapting Music

Learn how to arrange, rearrange or adapt published music to suit your choir.

Brittany McCorriston  
D4 Directors Workshop on “Interpretation”

As a director, what are the things to look at when analyzing your score. Beyond the basics of looking at black spots on the page, how do we interpret the lines? What about suggested tempo markings? How can we help our ringers interpret notations like a ritardando or fermata in the music? How do we, as directors then take our interpretations and make them come alive through our gestures as seen by our ringers.

Brittany McCorriston

G1 Bell Trees: 101 Uses for Bell Trees… Some assembly required…

Bell trees are visually mesmerizing and beautiful. They can be added as an accompaniment to larger musical groups, rung as processionals or recessionals, and they can be played as a solo or duet instrument. We will explore the basics of bell trees, including how to build them, mallet selection, finding repertoire, rehearsal techniques, and creative ways to use them. Ringers are asked to bring 4 bells from C6 up and two appropriate treble mallets.

heather nicholson 
G4 Conducting for Amateur Musicians

This class is of special interest to amateur bell choir directors who want to communicate more effectively with their ringers. You will learn about clarity in basic conducting patterns, how to initiate and finish cleanly, techniques for conducting fermata, and gestures for signalling changes in tempo and dynamics. These are just some of the things a ringer will need in his/her arsenal cross over to the other side.

Janet McDonald 
G6 Handbell and Handchime Maintenance

Come learn or refresh your memory on how to keep your handbells and handchimes in optimal ringing form, from how to clean them to making adjustments so they are free from ringing problems. This workshop will review basic maintenance techniques and procedures. Feel free to bring a misbehaving bell or chime to the class to have addressed.

Barbara Peaker 
G8 History of Kingston, The Limestone City

Kingston celebrated its 300th anniversary in 1973! Taken over by the British in 1760 Kingston surged in importance and became the first capital of Canada West and Canada East. It is home to Queen’s University, the Royal Military College, DuPont, Alcan, CFB Kingston, and of course, many prisons. Come learn about Kingston from one of Kingston’s renowned historians.

 Paul Van Nest
 G11 Processionals
Ringing bells while moving in a processional is not only a fun experience for ringers, but they have an impressive impact visually to those watching. Many groups are intimidated from trying processionals or feel they are too challenging. Not so! In this workshop, you will learn a step by step approach to learning how to process and how the movement will enhance the music. Ringers will have the opportunity to experiment with their choreographing.
 Dr. Debbie Fingas
G15  Spirituality and Drumming

Drumming has been a part of rituals in many cultures throughout history, celebrations of birth, marriage, even death - many sacred ceremonies. Drumming provides us with a spiritual path to places we are meant to be.

Michelle Adams 
G16  Tai Chi

Taoist Tai Chi® arts offer a gentle exercise that lubricates the body, ideal for the shoulder and arm issues that some Handbell Ringers experience, as well as other health issues that can strike us all as we age. Come sample this moving meditation – we’ll guide you through some of the moves and discuss the physical, mental and spiritual benefits that can occur.

Terry Kirham 

G17 Line Dancing - Beginner Level
New to Line Dancing? Learn some of the basic required steps and some easy beginner dances to a variety of music; and "it's not all country!" Wear comfortable shoes that will move on the floor without being too slippery. Step out for an hour of fun and maybe even a bit of exercise while you're at it!

 Linda Chapman
G18 Line Dancing - Improver Level
Do you have some dance experience? Even Zumba helps. A vine, is a vine; a box, is a box; no matter what style of dance you've done before! Use your knowledge of basic steps to try some more elaborate dances at a reasonable pace. Improve your memory by challenging your mind and your body (but not too much)!
 Linda Chapman

Workshop Clinician Bios

Michelle Adams is a retired dental assistant living in Nestleton. She was married to her husband David in 1976. They have 2 grown children and 3 grandchildren. During an event United Church Women, a workshop sparked an interest in drumming. She now facilitates a drum circle at her church in Blackstock and gives workshops when requested.
Joan Bolam is the Director of Ring Salvation! at the Salvation Army London Citadel Church and has been ringing Handbells for almost 20 years. Joan has rung at 3 International Symposia, many OGEHR Festivals and Ringing Links across Canada, and The International Music Camp on the border of North Dakota and Manitoba. Joan is the OGEHR Area Representatives Chairperson.
Linda Chapman started Line Dancing 15 years ago in Amherst, Nova Scotia, and finally found a form of exercise she loved because it was so much fun! After returning to Kingston, she took classes and in 2011, started teaching. She has taught four levels: Introductory, Beginner, Improver and Intermediate; and up to 11 classes per week. Several of her choreographed dances are posted on Copperknob, a worldwide website for line dances. Last year, Sugar Sugar, one of her Beginner dances, was posted on YouTube by dance groups around the globe! Once she started, she was hooked - and she has never looked back!
 John-Charles (J.-C.) Coolen, an active participant and leader in the Greater Toronto handbell community, has been ringing since 1989 and directing since 1998. One of the founding members of The Bronze Foundation, he has served as its Director since 2005. Since 2018, he has also directed Bronze Foundation Academy. This year marks his 25th year directing Bells of Bowmanville at the Bowmanville Seventh-day Adventist Church. For 13 years, he served as a member of the Board of Directors and Membership Secretary for OGEHR, including time as President. He has also served as Ontario District Coordinator for Area 2 of the HMA.
 Dr. Debbie Fingas is the Minister of Music at Trinity United Church in Cobourg, where she accompanies weekly services and conducts a children choir, the Chancel Choir and the Jubilate Handbell Choir. She conducts workshops in handbell ringing and has been faculty for the Ontario Guild of English Handbell Ringers Festivals, Handbell Musicians of America National Seminar and the Summer Institute of Church Music. Debbie has completed a Doctorate of Ministry from the University of Toronto examining how participating in church choir or handbell choir nurtures a participant’s spiritual life.
Naomi Kelly lives in Niagara Falls. She joined the Rainbow Ringers under Marjorie Slinn, 15 years ago and was thrilled to be able to join despite not being able to read music!! Naomi got her black belt when she was 19. She feels privileged to know so many amazing martial artists, and to have learned so many new and different disciplines. She has an 18 year old son and a blind, one eyed shih tzu.
Terry Kirham - Fung Loy Kok Taoist Tai Chi® began in Toronto in 1972, brought to Canada from China by Moy Lin-Shin. It has since spread across Canada – there are branches in most Canadian centres – as well as in 26 other countries. Taoist Tai Chi® practice is a moving meditation that reduces stress and helps you find joy. It can be done by people of all ages. Physically it will make you energetic, balanced, strong and supple. All instructors are volunteers, happy to share their knowledge with others.
Mark Matterson has 35 years of experience as a church musician. He obtained his first organist role at the age of 13 and has worked as a choir director (handbells and vocal) or as a tenor section lead ever since. A graduate of UBC School of Music majoring in Music Theory, Mark has been involved in the music program at St Peter’s Erindale since arriving in Mississauga in 2003 and has directed the St Peter's Handbell Ringers since 2007. Mark has contributed many arrangements and original compositions presented by the St Peter’s choirs over the years.

Brittany McCorriston has been playing handbells for over ten years and holds a Bachelors of Music in Contemporary Writing and Production from Berklee College of Music. Brittany specializes in music editing and arranging and currently works as a Music Publication Editor for Hal Leonard. Brittany has a passion for teaching and believes that fluency in music technology is beneficial to all music learners. In 2021, Brittany coordinated OGEHR’s Virtual Handbell project.

Janet McDonald has been a Director of the Limestone Ringers in Kingston since 1995. She has a BA with a major in Music, a BA in Music Education, and a MA in Choral Conducting. Janet was the Director of Kindermusik for 15 years and the Conductor of the Pro Arte Singers of Kingston. She enjoys singing and has been in many choirs from 9 years of age, until the present.
Janice Moncrieff is a retired teacher who used her innate talent of fostering a love of learning, creativity, music, community and joy in her classrooms. In retirement she is sharing that gift with adults. adults. Janice has sung in choirs, participated in handbell, ukulele, recorder, improv, clowning, drum and guitar workshops, and performed in musicals. She has recently become a certified Laughter Yoga instructor. Janice understands the connection we all have to music and is excited to offer workshops that help people connect to their inner child, find joy in being in community and share ways to release inhibitions.
 Dominique Moreau is a percussionist and music teacher in Ottawa. He plays with the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra and various other ensembles, teaches at Gisèle-Lalonde High School and the Ottawa Youth Orchestra and currently directs the St. Andrew's Ringers.
 heather nicholson has been ringing since 1992. She has been a founding member of The Bells of St. Andrew’s (Scarborough), The Bronze Foundation (Toronto), Alloy Fusion (Cobourg), and Quintessence Handbell Ensemble (Scarborough). She has performed and taught at local, regional, national and international handbell events across North America. heather was Editor of OGEHR’s “Clapper Chatter” for more than 10 years, and served on numerous event committees. She is currently OGEHR’s Central East Area Representative. heather performs bell solos and has three solo handbell arrangements in publication with Sonology Music, AGEHR Publishing, and From the Top Music.
Ron Parker retired from thirty-six years of teaching music as Head of Music and Fine Arts at Trinity College School, Port Hope. He also taught in Toronto and Bowmanville. Ron studied at The Royal Conservatory, University of Toronto, University of Western Ontario, the Banff School of Fine Arts and the Lincoln Center. He is an active performer in several orchestras, bands, quintets and jazz groups. Ron has conducted school ensembles throughout North America and led tours of European cities. He has many hobbies and interests but his wife, children, and grandchildren remain a source of joy and pride in his life.
Barbara Peaker has been ringing and directing handbells for close to 15 years. She has rung with and directed both children's and adult choirs in the Alliston and Orangeville areas. She is the owner of Hear Them Ring, a handbell accessory and maintenance company based near Barrie, Ontario. When she’s not spending time with her two young daughters, she enjoys solo handbell ringing at Westminster United Church in Orangeville, Ontario.
Paul Van Nest moved to Kingston in 1965 and is an active volunteer at his church and the community He is an avid historian (he has led 62 tours of American Civil War battlefields) and a member of the Kingston Historical Society. He and Sharon have a family of 4 children and 8 grandchildren.
 Elizabeth Winfield
 Lloyd Winfield
Kathleen Wissinger is OGEHR’s 2023 Festival Guest Conductor for Massed, Copper B and Bronze Choirs Known for her clear directing, creative teaching style and engaging compositions, she is a ringer, educator, director, educator and clinician. She has directed and taught at events across the US, in Canada and Japan. Kath chairs the CHIME Loan program for Area 3 (HMA) and served on the Area 3 Board for 8 years. She is often called on to mentor new groups, new ringers and new events. Kath also teaches piano in her home studio in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley of Virginia.

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