Music on the Hill launches fall season

Music on the Hill has planned a fall season of music programming that includes a workshop, concerts by three of the organization's four performing groups, and holiday fun with music. The community is invited to join in, both as concert-goers and as participants.
The schedule begins with a handbell workshop on Saturday morning, Oct. 7, from 9 to 1, at the WEPCO church complex on New Canaan Road in Wilton.
"I've always thought of this workshop as being for bell ringers and people who want to ring bells," says Carol Bogard, a board member and ringer with the organization's Jubilate Ringers handbell choir. "But there are lots of people who have never seen a bell choir, and people with music backgrounds who would enjoy ringing bells but don't think of it." She includes those who play other instruments, singers, and those who might want to dust off unused music skills and return to music with a group.
The workshop is open to all with some music-reading experience, including students. It is divided into two tracks: one for beginning ringers who have never touched a bell, and one for experienced ringers to build skills and practice advanced techniques. Music on the Hill artistic directors David H. Connell and Ellen Dickinson, each with decades' experience teaching and directing bell choirs, lead the sessions. The cost is $40, which includes lunch.
Those interested should register by email to

Fall concerts

The first concert of the fall is the Festival Chorus performing The Power of Song with David H. Connell, conductor, on Sunday, Oct. 15, at 3, in the Unitarian Church in Westport.
An uplifting program of stylistically diverse selections includes works by well-known composers Randall Thompson and Aaron Copland, as well as newer works. Among them are contemporary composer Craig Carnahan's setting of the 1919 poem Everyone Sang, written by Siegfried Sassoon at the end of WWI, and Eye for Eye by Shawn Kirchner.
On Friday, Nov. 17, the Chamber Chorus performs its fall concert, Autumn Leaves, with Ellen Dickinson, conductor, at the Wilton Presbyterian Church on New Canaan Road. The 16-voice professional Chamber Chorus, which performs a spring and fall concert each year, is known for its a cappella performance.

Christmas events

Music on the Hill's popular Sounds of the Season Christmas concert, featuring the Jubilate Ringers handbell choir with Festival Chorus, takes place on Friday evening, Dec. 15, at St. Matthew's Episcopal Church on New Canaan Road.
This traditional Christmas concert includes seasonal selections as well as favorite carols sung by all with the church's magnificent 52-rank Reuter organ.
Singers, including students, who would like to participate in the Christmas Festival Chorus are invited to register by email to . The chorus rehearses on Tuesdays from 7 to 9 p.m. starting Nov. 14.
Christmas handbell carolers — six ringers playing 12 bells — are available for holiday gatherings. Email for information.
Details for all concerts and events may be found online at .