Boston Handbell Festival

What is the Boston Handbell Festival?

The Back Bay Ringers (Boston, MA), in co-sponsorship with the Old South Ringers, are pleased to present this festival each year on the third Tuesday in May. It is a celebration of four local community handbell ensembles, with an invited guest choir and guest conductor each year. The concert is free and open to the public. Many audience members at the BHF are seeing handbells for the first time! In the past, they’ve been treated to an enormous variety of performances, including pieces that included choreography, singing, baseball hats, or pirate costumes, as well as a memorable massed piece involving five choirs and Old South’s stunning Skinner pipe organ.

In keeping with Back Bay Ringers’ (BBR’s) commitment to the education of handbell artistry, a central piece of the evening is the award of a 2-octave set of Malmark Choirchimes to a greater-Boston-area school. The selected music teacher also receives a packet of music appropriate for use with young musician and a one-year mentorship with BBR Artistic Director Griff Gall, an elementary music specialist who successfully incorporates chimes into his music curriculum. We’re very proud to think of how many young musicians are being introduced to ringing instruments through the success of the BHF and the chime donation program! A free will offering will be collected during the event in support of this Chime Donation program. The Festival committee invites applications from all local area schools who wish to integrate chimes into their music program.

Please visit the BBR website to learn more about the Boston Handbell Festival and the Chime donation program.

Where is it held?

Old South Church
645 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02116

When will it be?

Tuesday, May 21, 2024 at 7:30 PM

Who is Ringing?

  • Back Bay Ringers
  • Old South Ringers
  • Merrimack Valley Ringers
  • New England Ringers
  • Special Guest Choir: Lincoln Ringers, First Parish, Lincoln, MA
  • Guest Director: Diane Burke