Welcome to Freedom to Ring – 2022 Spring Ring, brought to you by the LA Metro Region of Area 12.

After an absence of a few years, including a two-year postponement due to COVID, we have brought back this special event that allows handbell musicians to come together and do what we love to do; ring.

Claremont United Church of Christ has graciously agreed to share their campus with us. The event will include two divisional and entire group massed ringing. Several of the selections are from the repertoire that will be played at Red, White, and Bells, the Area 12 biannual conference. The year’s conference will be in Las Vegas July 2 through 5, 2022.

In choosing what Division to ring, consider the following:

  1. What level of music you normally play.
  2. The amount of time you need/have to prepare the music. The time at the Spring Ring is not intended to be a time to learn the music, but a time to refine the musicality of the piece as guided by the clinicians.
  3. While highly encouraged to play all the pieces, you do not necessarily have to participate in every piece.

You can come as a Choir/Ensemble or as an Individual Ringer. Individual Ringers may be added to incomplete groups, if the group desires, so Choirs/Ensembles please let us know if you have space available. Choirs/Ensembles will be expected to bring their own bells, chimes, foam, and table covers. We will make every effort to incorporate Individual Ringers into groups that have holes, or we may create a group of Individual Ringers.

The culmination of the time together will be a time of sharing the pieces learned and sharing “solo” pieces by individual groups. All groups, no matter their skill level, are encouraged to play a solo piece during this time. This is a safe space for all of us to learn from each other, encourage each other, and to build our presentation skills. There will be plenty of fine handbell musicians available to fill in if you need a sub or two to complete your ensemble for a solo piece. The sharing time/concert will last approximately one hour.

Your registration will be confirmed by email shortly after it is received. Walk-in registrants are welcome at the door (at full registration price, plus a $5 surcharge), as long as there is room. Early registration helps planning, so please register as soon as possible!

At this time, we request that unvaccinated ringers refrain from participating. Based on current conditions and facility requirements, masks will be required while in close proximity to people and indoors. You will be asked to sign a COVID questionnaire/waiver. We will keep everyone updated as the event gets closer regarding COVID protocols.

Snacks and drinks will be provided. Claremont has several food establishments nearby for lunch or you can bring your own.


If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me, Sharon Guilliams at LAMetro.Area12@handbellmusicians.org.


Both of our Clinicians have a Concordia background, one from Wisconsin and one from here in California.

Matthew Compton

Matthew directs the Bells of the Cascades’ in Vancouver, Washington. A Colorado Springs native, he has been composing, arranging, and conducting music for handbells since 2007, when he was in the eighth grade. He had his first composition published at the age of 15, making him one of the youngest ever published handbell composers. Matthew has numerous compositions and arrangements in print or in the publishing process.

An avid performer, player and student of handbell music, Matthew is known for his high-energy originals and arrangements, and beautiful harmonies. His music has been performed across the world by many elite groups, including The Agape Ringers, the Alleluia Ringers of Concordia University Wisconsin, Pikes Peak Youth Ringers, and Hong Kong Youth Handbell Ensemble. In addition, Matthew’s music has been selected for the repertoire for regional and national handbell festivals, including Distinctly Bronze East and West, and the International Handbell Symposium.

Matthew graduated in 2016 from Concordia University Wisconsin with a degree in music and a focus on composition and conducting. During his time at Concordia, he rang with the Alleluia Ringers, a touring handbell choir; started a student handbell choir to perform at an annual campus event; and was the handbell director at a local church.

Erik Der

Erik is a graduate of Concordia University Irvine. He is a skilled handbell musician with 18 years of ringing experience. He directs two children’s handbell ensembles at Trinity United Presbyterian in Santa Ana, an adult bell group at Covenant Presbyterian Church in Orange, and he has been a clinician at multiple handbell events in Orange County California. In addition to directing, he is a member of St John’s Cathedral Bells in Orange, California, and is excited to tour Paris with them in July. During the workday, Erik is the Community Engagement Manager of the Arts at Concordia University, Irvine. In his free time, he enjoys studying music, theology, and history.


Please purchase and prepare the music in advance. The clinicians will work on the interpretation of the music, not the assignments or working out the piece.

Division 1 – Conducted by Erik Der

  • Grace All Sufficient* – Sondra Tucker, Casa Publications, HB034, Level 2. 3-6 Octaves
  • Fantasy on Kingsfold – H.D. Wagner, Hope Publishing Company, 2134, Level 2+, 3-6 Octaves (Optional Chimes)

Division 2 – Conducted by Matthew Compton

  • The Lord’s My Shepard, I’ll Not Want – Alex Guebert, Choristers Guild, CGB979, Level 3+, 3-7 Octaves (Optional Chimes and Flute)
  • Canticle – M. Compton – Beckenhorst Press, Inc. HB588-2, Level 3+, 3-7 Octaves (Optional Chimes and Percussion)

Massed Ringing – Conducted by both Erik and Matthew

  • America the Beautiful* – Arnold Sherman, Red River Music, HB0002, Level 3, 3-6 Octaves
  • Soliloquy for Bells* – Karen Buckwalter, Harold Flammer Music, HP5175 “easy-medium,” 3-5 Octaves
  • Fervent Freedom* – Michael Mazzatenta, AGEHR, AG35387 (Area 12 Composition Contest Winner), Level 3, 3-5 Octaves (Optional Chimes)

* Area 12 Vegas Conference piece


  • Early-Bird Registration HMA Member (Prior to 3/16/2022) – $30/person
  • Normal Registration HMA Member (3/16/2022 to 4/1/2022) – $40/person
  • Youth* Early-Bird Registration HMA Member (Prior to 3/16/2022) – $20/youth
  • Youth* Normal Registration HMA Member (3/16/2022 to 4/1/2022) – $30/youth
  • Walk-In Registration HMA Member (4/2/2022), if room – $45/person or youth
  • Non-HMA Member participation fee, in addition to registration – $10/non-HMA participant

      * Youth is defined as 18 and under

Please note that if your choir is a member of HMA, individual ringers may register at the HMA price.

Note – Claremont is graciously providing tables for our use, so there is no fee for tables. During registration, groups/ensembles will be asked how many feet of table they need.


Cancellations POSTMARKED (or received, if via email) before FEBRUARY 15, 2022, will be refunded 100%, less a $5 cancellation fee.

Cancellations POSTMARKED (or received if via email) before MARCH 15, 2022, will be refunded 50%, less a $5 cancellation fee.

There will be no refunds for cancellations after MARCH 14, 2022.


Registration can be done for groups or individuals online via the Click to Register button below. For planning purposes, please register early. If you would like to register using a hardcopy, please contact Sharon Guilliams at LAMetro.Area12@handbellmusicians.org.

Payment can be made either using PayPal or by check. PayPal link below. Please make checks payable to: AGEHR AREA XII (Memo: “Freedom to Ring”). Mail checks to Sharon Guilliams, 1628 Via Tulipan, San Clemente, CA 92673. Confirmation of receipt of payment will be sent via email, so please include your email in with the check.




8:00 am – 9:00 am

Load In/Registration

9:00 am – 10:15 am

Massed Rehearsal

10:15 am – 10:30 am

Break/one group moves to separate room

10:30 am-12:00 pm

Division 1 & 2 Rehearsals

12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Lunch/Solo Warm-up

1:00 pm– 1:45 pm

Division 1 & 2 Rehearsals

1:45 pm – 2:00 pm

Break/one group moves back to main room

2:00 pm – 2:45 pm

Massed Rehearsals

2:45 pm – 3:00 pm

Break – Solo Warmup

3:00 pm – 3:40 pm

Run Through – Massed/Divisions

4:00 pm – 5:00 pm


5:10 pm – 6:00 pm

Load Out

Copyright Information/Tablet Use

Handbell Musicians of America Area 12 complies with US Copyright Law. Each performance folder must have a legally purchased copy of the music used at this event. Photocopied music will not be permitted, except with written authorization from the copyright holder. Your paid registration certifies that you will purchase AND WILL BRING published copies of all copyrighted music used by you and/or your group during the Spring Ring.

Handbell Musicians of America is committed to upholding the copyright laws of the United States and protecting the rights of our publishers, arrangers, and composers.

If you wish to use a tablet computer to hold your music in place of standard paper copies on a music stand, you must contact the publisher of each piece of music to first obtain permission to convert a purchased piece of music to the format required for the tablet you are using. Copies of the written permission received from publishers must be presented on request from the event organizer, event chair, or Handbell Musicians of America staff. Permission from a publisher for one piece does not imply permission for other songs from the same publisher. The title of each song used in this format must be included in the written permission received. Attendee should also have legally purchased copies of all music with them for verification.

Handbell Musicians of America Membership

This event is sponsored by Area 12 of Handbell Musicians of America. As such, membership in the Guild is strongly encouraged. A director or church/school can join for an annual fee of $95 for their entire choir (for a monthly fee of $9). If individual choir members want to receive access to online resources, they can join for a sub-membership of $10 each. There are also membership options for full-time students and retired handbell musicians! Membership in Handbell Musicians of America gives you a monthly copy of Overtones magazine, discount prices for area and national events, access to mentoring programs, and more!

To join, go to http://handbellmusicians.org/membership/join-the-guild


Contact Sharon Guilliams at LAMetro.Area12@handbellmusicians.org.

This event is sponsored by Handbell Musicians of America, dedicated to uniting people through the musical art of handbell and handchime ringing.

When paying your event fees, please be sure to add a note indicating the name of the event.