Blog

  • Chris Sheppard

    Chris began ringing handbells after college, but was involved in music from an early age, singing in church choirs, community choirs, school choirs, and the Texas Lutheran College Concert Choir.  A trumpet player too, that can make for a busy Easter morning service singing, ringing, and trumpeting. He has played handbells, mostly bass buckets, for […]

  • Carolyn Schmidt

    Carolyn began her music career at age four by playing piano, choral accompanying followed at 14.  She received a Music Minor from Ithaca College. She currently plays with three handbell ensembles, plays piano and keyboard for a big band, a pipe and drum band, a church choir and two community choirs. She has her own […]

  • Robin Reich

    Robin is excited to return to Florida and to Ring Sarasota.  Handbells have been one of her passions for almost 50 years.  She also enjoys singing and creating handmade cards and jewelry.  Robin is employed by a software company as a procurement analyst.

  • Phyllis O’Keef

    Phyllis recently moved to Bradenton from North Carolina with her husband, who now pastors Roser Community Church, Anna Maria. As a music educator and church musician, she enjoys every aspect of music making: choral singing, church organist, pianist, accompanying, ringing, and directing children to adults. Her introduction to handbells was as a youth counselor with […]

  • Kyle Miller Wallace

    Kyle brings with her 20+ years of handbell ringing experience and directing. She is married to Stuart, and they share a home with Kyle’s mom, Norma, and their two schnauzers, Nicholas and Holly. Kyle is a member of Pine Shores Presbyterian Church’s handbell choir, the Clara Kaiser Carillon.  By day, she maintains an independent bookkeeping […]

  • Steven Leadbetter

    Prior to relocating to Florida, Steve was a founding member (2002) of the Atlanta Concert Ringers. He rings in advanced handbell events including Distinctly Bronze (DB) East, DB West, Bay View, and All-Stars at National Seminar and Pinnacle. Steve was among 29 ringers selected nationally for the Raleigh Ringers’ Virtuoso 2015 performance experience and also […]

  • Kim Johnson

    Kim is a retired Information Technology Project Manager. She is a native of Wisconsin and, even though she has lived in Florida over 30 years, she still considers herself a “Cheesehead”. She began playing handbells twelve years ago when her church decided to start a handbell group. Always active in choir, she thought, “This sounds […]

  • Lawrence Bauer

    The son of Wesleyan Methodist missionaries, Larry grew up in the Republic of South Africa where he began piano lessons at the age of 9.  Many years later, in 1980, he was introduced to the art of handbell ringing when his church purchased a 2-octave set of Malmark Handbells, and he was instantly hooked! Since […]

  • Jeanne M. Jessup

    Raised in New Jersey and a graduate of William Paterson University, Jeanne was an elementary teacher for 30 years.  Music has been in her life always, beginning with the clarinet at age six and continuing to piano and voice. Her career with handbells began with retiring from teaching in Pennsylvania and moving to Florida.  She […]

  • Kathie Hayes*

    Kathie graduated from Purdue and the University of Chicago and has had careers ranging from pharmacy, corporate taxation, retail store ownership to motherhood. She currently works in fiber arts. Kathie has been ringing handbells in ensembles and bell tree solos since 1994 and counts the International Symposium experience in 2008 as one of life’s highlights. Here’s […]

  • Katy Ellis

    Katy began ringing handbells in 2013 after being called in to substitute in her church’s handbell choir. After two rehearsals, she was hooked on the instrument and joined full time. Since then, she has been an active choir member, helped co-found a small handbell ensemble, and has attended festivals and workshops throughout the state of […]

  • Terri Chapman

    Although her degree from Penn State University reads “Architectural Engineering,” Terri discovered her love of Church Music back in the 90s when, as a young mother of three, she was asked to direct the Children’s Choir “because you play the piano, right?” Saying yes to that request morphed into directing, at one point, 7 handbell […]