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USA Today Features Berea's Bells

USA Today, in its Dec. 3 issue, featured Berea College’s 56-bell carillon in the tower of the Jessie Preston Draper Building as one of the “10 great places to chime in with the bells.”

John Courter

The article, by feature writer Shawn Sell, listed ten places to hear seasonal music over the holidays. The section about Berea follows:

“Boasting one of the newest and most well-designed carillons in the country, Berea's bells were cast 20 years earlier for another facility. College carillonneur John Courter plays holiday and seasonal music throughout the month, including the “Christmas on the Carillon” concert Dec. 21."

The free, open-air concert took place at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 21. The program included arrangements of familiar Christmas carols from England, Germany, France, Poland and the USA. “Prelude and Pastorale for Carillon,” by John Courter, was first heard on Christmas Eve, 2003, and was commissioned for the 50th anniversary of the carillon of Central Christian Church, San Antonio, Texas.

Courter has been playing Christmas music during December on Mondays through Fridays at 5 p.m. in 30-minute recitals. Although the carillon is heard best from ground level, persons may come up to the playing room at the top of the Draper Building any time the carillon is being played. One can observe how the player uses fists and feet to create beautiful music across the campus.

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