April 24, 2012


By Kathryn Kopchik

LEWISBURG, Pa. — Bucknell University will present two concerts by the Rooke Chapel Ringers and the Rooke Chapel Choir. Both concerts, directed by William Payn, director of choral studies at Bucknell, are free and open to the public.

The Rooke Chapel Ringers will perform in concert Saturday, April 28, in Rooke Chapel at 8 p.m.

The program will include original compositions by Michael Joy, William Payn and Cathy Moklebust for handbells, hymn and spiritual settings, and popular classics by Bach, Handel and Bizet arranged for handbells.

Organized in 1983 under Payn's direction, the handbell choir consists of 14 members selected by audition and who represent every major field of study at Bucknell, including the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, business administration, education and engineering.

The ringers play regularly for Protestant worship services on campus and participate in the traditional ringing-in-of-Christmas at Candlelight services in Rooke Chapel each December.

The Rooke Chapel Choir will perform a pre-tour concert Sunday, April 29, in Rooke Chapel at 7:30 p.m. The choir will travel to Venice, Croatia and Slovenia at the end of May, singing in Venice on May 23, Ljubljana on May 25, and Dubrovnik on May 28.

Some significant works from the choir program will be "Alleluia" by Eric Whitacre, "Ubi Caritas" by Mealor, which was sung at Princess Kate's royal wedding, and Ola Gjeilo's "Dark Night of the Soul." Other works by Payn, Holst, Stroope and Clausen will be included as well as several popular African-American spirituals.

The choir has gained international recognition for its creative interpretations of some of the most significant 20th-century American sacred repertory. The choir's select members represent every major field of study at Bucknell, including the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, business administration, education and engineering.

The choir's popular Candlelight Service of Carols attracts capacity crowds to Rooke Chapel for three performances every December. Periodically since 1987, a PBS production of this annual holiday service has received national distribution by the Central Education Television Network. The production has received the Iris Award and was nominated for an Emmy in 1996, 2004, and 2011.

Contact: Division of Communications
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