Friday, May 30, 2008

JoyBell Ringers Play Capriccio

It's taken me several months of off and on effort to figure out how to download video from our new video camera, then find the actual files of the video clips in my computer, then just today, with Amy's generous help, to figure out that I have to export the clips to a compressed format for the web. So here it is: The JoyBell Ringers playing their new favorite piece in our concert at Salemtowne earlier this month.

This is a wonderful original handbell composition by Kevin McChesney. Following is some insightful commentary about the piece by Jason Wells, Director of Ring of Fire:

Capriccio has been the cornerstone piece for Ring of Fire since we
started this adventure in 1997. And for the first few years ROF
blasted their way through it as if running for our lives from hungry
tigers! With no mental imagery, we were left with "This piece ROCKS!
- Let's GO!" We had no sense of the true scope of the piece. That is
until Kevin (McChesney, the composer)came out to Portland for one of his sessions with us.

He told us to think of the "story" of the piece - to imagine angels
dancing around the throne of God - a Heavenly celebration in the
opening A section. And then for the B section - to imagine those
very angels looking on in horror as Christ was hung on the cross - He
then asked us to focus on the resurrection as it explodes into
celebration as Christ rises from the tomb for the restatement of the

For us - we've found other images that help the piece "speak" - we
imagine the sword piercing Christ's side with the dissonant chord in
measure 86 with the Gb3. Also, after seeing "The Passion of the
Christ," I now often drag out measure 90 (with a C2 added) for a good
10 seconds - I visualize that tear from God falling from Heaven and
splashing at the foot of the cross - very "IT IS FINISHED."

We have many visual clues packed through the piece - from the stone
rolling away in measures 95-97 - to the "uplifting" mart lifts in
measures 103 and 105 - to the final incredible celebration of reunion
and victory as the piece wraps up on the final page - I believe those
images are flashing through the kids' minds each and every
performance - I see it on their faces - and it helps to keep the
piece "alive" year after year.

No comments: