1. What are the requirements to be a member?
The only requirement is that the ringer must attend school, whether public, private, home school, or college. However, commitment, motivation, and a positive attitude are necessary personality traits of both ringers and parents to be a part of the organization.
2. How can my child become a member?
If you believe you or someone you know might be interested in joining, please feel free to contact us.
3. What is the difference between the ensembles within the DSBC?
The Dorothy Shaw Bell Choir consists of three ensembles:
• The Senior ensemble is the performing ensemble made up of 30 ringers.
• The Junior ensemble are in training to replace a Senior ensemble member when a position becomes available.
• The Preparatory ensemble is where ringers with little musical experience are taught basic music skills before being promoted to the Junior ensemble.
4. How often does the bell ensemble rehearse?
The ensembles rehears during the regular fall and spring school semesters but does not hold rehearsals in the summer.
• The Junior ensemble and Preparatory ensemble rehearse once a week on Thursdays from 5:00 - 6:30 PM.
• The Senior ensemble rehearses every Tuesday from 7:00-9:30 PM and certain Sundays from 2:00-4:30 PM.
• In November and December there are additional rehearsals for The Littlest Wiseman production.
5. Where does the ensemble perform?
Since 1964, the DSBC has performed in the annual play pageant of the nativity “The Littlest Wiseman”.
• The Senior ensemble tours annually to wide variety of venues. For information on their past tours please click here.
• The ensemble also performs for other events in the community such as weddings, churches and concert halls.
6. Are there any upcoming performances?
If you are interested in attending a performance please visit our Calendar Page.
7. Can the DSBC be booked for an event?
If you are interested in having The Dorothy Shaw Bell Choir perform at your event, click here to make an inquiry.
8. Are there any dues to be a member of the DSBC?
Membership to the Dorothy Shaw Bell Choir is free. There are some minimal expenses such as items required for the dress code.
• There is a voluntary Parent’s Club of Ensemble which has annual dues.
9. Where does the ensemble receive their funding?
The Dorothy Shaw Bell Choir has been primarily funded by the love and generosity of the Mary D. and F. Howard Walsh family through their foundations.
We do however actively encourage donations from other sources - as we are a tax-exempt 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization.
10. What are the benefits to becoming a member?
Members have the opportunity to participate in a truly unique organization which strives to teach and develop in its members self-discipline, self-motivation, consistency of accomplishment, etiquette, and other positive qualities through the art of music and related fields. In addition, members of the ensemble enjoy travel opportunities, make new friends, learn teamwork, gain leadership skills, and discover much about themselves through the work and effort put into learning and performing their music.
11. Why do I see more than 30 ringers in some of the pictures?
In the spring semester the departing Senior ensemble members train the newly promoted Senior ensemble members from the junior ensemble to play their bells resulting in a greater number of senior ensemble members.
• On some occasions, the Senior, Junior and Prep ensembles perform together, which is another reason there may be a higher number of ringers on stage.
12. How many octaves of bells does the choir use?
The choir uses of six octaves of Schulmerich Handbells ranging from G2 to G8.