The Guild is both a student organization and an ensemble of the music department. As a student organization we:
• offer open tower events for the college and local community,
• go on road trips to other carillons for wider performance opportunities,
• enjoy each other’s company with carillon dinners (“Carillinners”) and other social events,
• elect officers and choose new members from the entire college community.
As a music ensemble we:
• have lessons on the practice instruments,
• perform concerts and masterclasses on the “big bells”,
• offer music for special services and events on campus,
• invite guest teachers to stretch our skills,
• may take carillon as an ensemble credit, or even lessons for credit.
We are a very busy group. If you are lucky enough to be chosen from our large pool of applicants, you will receive a weekly half hour lesson with Margaret, and must practice at least 1/2-1 hour per week to prepare for your very first recital - the Junior Advancement Recital. Once you can play, you must keep playing! At least two solo concerts per month, one masterclass per month, two open tower events and one road trip per semester are required to keep you an active member of the guild.
With this activity comes a growth in musical and technical skills - the more you play the better you get! You can opt to further your study with Margaret by working on a Senior Advancement recital; you’ll learn to arrange for the carillon and prepare longer recitals. This will permit you to take carillon for credit; ensemble credit and private lessons for credit are only available to senior members.
Practically no one who comes to Wellesley has played or even seen a carillon before, but all the members become accomplished performers in a short amount of time. The more musical experience you have on another instrument the less time it will take you to learn to play the bells.
We are an important group. Our concerts create the rhythm of the passing of classes, and mark the big moments of the college year - from Convocation to Commencement. Our music helps you celebrate when you are happy, and consoles you when you are sad. We are the lucky few who share the carillon with the entire college community, and the music we offer on the bells connects us all to each other across campus and across the ages.