Upcoming Concerts: "Once Upon a December"

Bells of the Cascades, Fall 2023 concerts, "Once Upon a December"

With our theme based on the enchanting, music-box style waltz that was featured in the animated film “Anastasia,” Bells of the Cascades is pleased to offer a wonderful mix of pieces for your holiday enjoyment! You’ll hear some familiar Christmas songs in surprising arrangements, as well as other types of pieces that will evoke all the uplifting feelings that humanity chooses to embrace at this time of year. From the gentle to the stirring, we hope to entertain and leave you with a warm glow and a full heart. We look forward to having you with us!

This year we’ll perform in two concerts, and we’ll be joined on some of the pieces in Vancouver by the Salmon Creek Exultation Ringers. Follow the links below for details….

Many thanks to the Oregon Arts Commission for their generous funding support this year!

Concert Program
  • Allegro Glorioso - Arnold B. Sherman
  • Angels We Have Heard on High - Traditional French Carol,
    arr. Kyler Brengle
  • Savior of the Nations, Come - Gregorian Chant/Veni, Emmanuel,
    arr. Sandra Eithun
  • Fantasia on Forest Green - Traditional English Melody,
    arr. Lloyd Larson
  • Meditations on the Theme of Peace - Derek Hakes
  • Inspiring Presence - Alex Guebert
  • The Angel Gabriel from Heaven Came - Basque Melody,
    arr. Joel Raney
  • Once Upon a December - Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty,
    arr. Matthew Compton
  • Reverie - Karen Lakey Buckwalter
  • A Child is Born - Traditional French Carol/George Fredric Handel,
    arr. Matthew Compton

View our Spring 2023 concert!

Our Spring concert season, with the theme “From Sea to Skye,” was memorable and wonderful in every way, especially since our Saturday, June 3, 2023 concert at Salmon Creek United Methodist Church featured a surprise for our director, Matthew Compton, by not one, but TWO handbell choirs playing a commissioned piece in his honor. We were joined by the Exultation Ringers from that church, to play “Inspiring Presence” by Alex Guebert. We invite you to watch how we bring Matt to tears and honor him for the very inspiring presence he has been in all of our lives!


Get involved in Bells of the Cascades!

Bells of the Cascades

Passionate about innovative, advanced handbell ringing in the Portland area? We want your help!

Join the board of directors

We’re always looking for new folks to help guide our 501(c)(3) nonprofit, whether you’re a director of a church or community ensemble, a ringer yourself, or simply a supporter of the musical arts.

While fundraising and budgeting is a big part of the board’s role, we’re also looking for people with experience in event organizing, communications, grantwriting, and strategic planning. No prior board experience necessary. Members of our board are not paid in money but in camaraderie, love for one another, and satisfaction in advancing the art of handbell music.

Interested? Send an email to president@bellsofthecascades.org and we’ll be in touch!

Volunteer as a substitute ringer

As we know you understand, a handbell ensemble is one instrument played by several people, and when one person has to miss a rehearsal the instrument simply isn’t complete!

We’re looking for ringers who have some experience playing intermediate or advanced-level handbell music and are willing to be on call (with advance notice) to step in when we need a substitute ringer for Tuesday evening rehearsals. This is also a great way to get to know the ensemble if you’d like to explore the possibility of auditioning in the future.

If you’d like to volunteer, please email director@bellsofthecascades.org and we’ll put you on the list!


Voyages: In Search of Peace

Bells of the Cascades was invited to perform at the 2021 national convention of the Handbell Musicians of America in Phoenix, Arizona, along with Cathedral Bells of Orange, California.

The video of our performance at this event is not currently available due to copyright reasons, but the responses from those who attended were extremely gratifying! We were thrilled at how moved the audience was by the music we made with Cathedral Bells. Here are some examples of what people wrote to us.

The following night we presented the same concert in California. Here is the video of that performance.