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Promoting public interest and participation in the arts since 1961.

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Global Harmony

Bell Ringing in the Empty Sky

Sunday, October 30, 2:00 p.m.
Gualala Arts Center
Buy tickets

Anchor Bay Children's Choir Gualala Arts will present a multi-faceted performance entitled "Bell Ringing in the Empty Sky" on Sunday, October 30 at 2:00 p.m.

It features singing, dancing, instrumental music, and a world premiere. Performers include Ancora of Piedmont East Bay Children's Choir, members of the Anchor Bay Choral and Dance Project, and the Anchor Bay Children's Choir, the Ernest Bloch Bell Ringers, and Karl Young on shakuhachi.

Marty Regan
Marty Regan
The highlight of the concert will be the world premiere of a new composition for shakuhachi, hand bells, treble soloist and children's choir by composer Marty Regan, who is well known for being one of the leading composers of music for combined ensembles of Japanese and western instruments.

Ancora of Piedmont Choirs The title of the new piece is "Homework." The words are from a poem of the same title by the Japanese poet Tanikawa Shuntaro.

Mr. Regan is originally from Long Island, New York, and currently teaches at Texas A & M University.

On the program will be a special performance by Robert Geary's vocal group Ancora, which is part of the award-winning Piedmont East Bay Children's Choir and was the inspiration for his wife, Sue Bohlin, starting the Anchor Bay Children's Choir. Both Geary, who founded the Piedmont Choirs, and Bohlin have worked for the East Bay organization for over 27 years.

Ernest Bloch Bell Ringers
Ernest Bloch Bell Ringers
Front row: Suzanne Kritz, Remi Alexander, Rachel Kritz, Elise Allen, Davina Allen
Middle row: Sue Hansen, Claire Skilton, Gail Thompson, Lucienne Allen, Linda Bostwick, Irene Leidner, Sita Milchev
Back row: Eric Kritz, Jim Iversen, Michael Alexander, Jeanne Jackson, Bill Halderman, Karl Young

The Ernest Bloch Bell Ringers, named after the composer grandfather of local resident Sita Milchev, delights in playing in a wide variety of musical styles. Singing is an important part of the bell ringers' programs, as there are many excellent vocalists in the group, and the audience is often invited to sing along.

Local musicians often join the bell ringers, including clarinetist Eric Kritz and Karl Young on shakuhachi. They are a community bell-ringing group who meet every Monday at 5:00 p.m. at the home of Rick and Jeanne Jackson.

Karl Young on shakuhachi The shakuhachi is a Japanese bamboo flute originally played by the Komuso, who were priests of the Fuke-Shu sect of Zen Buddhism, who wandered Japan during the Edo period (1600-1868). The shakuhachi is currently played in a variety of Japanese classical and folk settings as well as in various forms of western music. Along with playing the traditional repertoire, Karl Young also plays jazz and frequently joins in with local musicians. Karl is a physicist at the University of California, San Francisco and lives part time in Gualala with his artist wife, Suzan Friedland.

Karl Young and the Ernest Bloch Bell Ringers will also perform several songs together, including the haunting "Le Ping" and "Amazing Grace" with the singing bells technique.

The Anchor Bay Choral & Dance Project, a Gualala Arts workshop, will start Monday August 29 at 4:00 pm. and is for girls 8 years old and up to grade 12. It will include one hour of hip-hop dance with Melissa Newhall, instructor, and Joselyn Malik, assistant, and one hour of singing, in particular to learn the choral part to Mr. Regan's new piece, "Homework." The workshop will take place at Gualala Arts Center and will end October 24. Tuition for the 9 week session is $200 for Arts Center members and $220 for non-members. A limited number of partial scholarships are offered if registering early. Call 707-884-1138 to participate.

Tickets for the October 30th show are $15 advance, $5 more on the day of the performance. Youth 7 to 17 will be admitted free. For advance purchase, go to Brown Paper Tickets or call them at 800-838-3006. To purchase in person, visit the Gualala Arts Center or Dolphin Gallery in Gualala.

The Ernest Bloch Bell Ringers & friends will also present a Holiday Concert for the Coast on Saturday, December 2 at the Arts Center.

Bell Ringing in the Empty Sky

Gualala Arts Center
October, 2011

Bell Ringing in the Empty Sky, Gualala Arts Center, October, 2011

Bell Ringing in the Empty Sky, Gualala Arts Center, October, 2011

Bell Ringing in the Empty Sky, Gualala Arts Center, October, 2011

Bell Ringing in the Empty Sky, Gualala Arts Center, October, 2011

Bell Ringing in the Empty Sky, Gualala Arts Center, October, 2011

Bell Ringing in the Empty Sky, Gualala Arts Center, October, 2011

Bell Ringing in the Empty Sky, Gualala Arts Center, October, 2011

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Gualala Arts 50th anniversary logo

The Gualala Arts Center, located at 46501 Old State Highway in Gualala, CA,
is open weekdays 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and weekends from noon to 4:00 p.m.
Please call (707) 884-1138 for more information, or email

Join us in celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Gualala Arts, 1961 - 2011

Serving the coastal communities of northern Sonoma & southern Mendocino Counties.