U3A is excited to have Wendy Turton tutoring a class in Handchimes at Mapleton Community Hall on Tuesdays from 10.00am to 11.30am commencing 21 July 2020. Handchimes and music will be supplied. If you are interested in in this class, you can enrol online through the U3A website www.u3asunshine.org.au Course Code 20MAT310.
Wendy was the Conductor of Cairns Tropical Chimes and has a background as a Classroom Music Specialist. Wendy’s aim is help members train to be performance ready in the use of these beautiful instruments with the aim of holding concerts at special events during the year.
Below is more detailed information about Handchimes and here’s a link to a short video showing them being played in a concert.
Handchimes are easy to use by young and old and create a beautiful tone. In fact, they have been said to create the purest tone known to mankind. Players do not have to master the instrument to create this beauty – they just hold the instrument and snap their wrist. No worries about embouchure, fingerings, or being in tune; the beauty is instantaneous, using the wrist to create the sound and the arm to sustain it.
The music skills that can be taught by ringing are many. Players can learn about note duration, rhythm, harmony, and melodic line. Through ringing, players will increase their independent thinking, listening skills, attention span, physical coordination, self-discipline and personal expression. They also gain social and emotional skills through collaboration and the development of self-esteem. Working with a group of ringers teaches tolerance, patience, support, and cooperation, to name a few. Most of all, players will have instant success and experience the delight of sharing music with friends.
Using handchimes requires tables, foam (to damp the chimes and protect them), and music. Each player (10 for 3 octaves) has one or two handchimes and stands in a semicircle behind the tables. Players can learn to ring and damp, ring note durations, scales, chords, and melodies.
The group will function best with 10-14 players. Members will be encouraged to suggest musical pieces for the class repertoire. There will also be time for social interaction and morning tea.