SUPS bells ring in the holidays

SUPS bells ring in the holidays

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Zak Porter / The Arbiter

On Thursday, Nov. 29 the Student Union Building’s dining area was given a taste of the holiday season. Hang your stockings, people. It’s coming.

Phyllis Tincher, performing as a solo artist, played a free concert using her handbells.

The event was organized by Amy Rajkovich, Student Union Fine Arts performance program coordinator.

“I think it’s pretty fascinating that one person could pull all of this off while keeping the timing down and grabbing the exact correct bell each time,” Manny Wheaton, sophomore mechanical engineering major said.

According to Tincher, there were 40 bells.

These bells stretched out to three different octaves.

Starting off as a child, Tincher was a student of the piano. It was not until 1993 when she was asked to direct a youth choir when she developed interest in the art of handbelling.

Tincher originally knew nothing of this instrument, but soon learned the way a handbell table was set up was very similar to the way keys on a piano are set up. Each bell played a different note, just like each key on a piano.

“I come from a very musical family,” Tincher said.

In 1997, she decided to start soloing on the bells, and in 2002 she attained the accompaniment of Mr. Sean Rogers, keyboardist. Once these two began playing together, they started their own non-profit organization called the Ring Praise Music Ministry which benefits different charity groups.

While she went entirely solo last week, Tincher typically does play with Rogers. The two do about 25 concerts a year, performing at local churches and assisted living homes.

Tincher said she does not think either the handbell or piano outdoes the other when played together.

“I look at it as a duet,” she said.

Matt Hodel is a sophomore business major who has been playing guitar for about seven years.

“I know it’s an art,” Hodel said. “But it looks like she’s got it down to a science.”

Whatever it is, with the sound of Tincher’s  handbells in the air last Thursday, the
innocence of the holidays were in the air.