Songs of the season

The Acadia Handbell Choir and Acadia Choral Society will both present Christmas concerts in the first few days of December.

The handbell choir presents a concert and sing-along Monday, Dec. 3 at 6 p.m. at the Southwest Harbor Public Library.

The performance will include a mix of traditional carols and holiday tunes. After the performance, anyone interested is invited to try the bells for themselves.

The Acadia Handbell Choir was formed in the 1970s. The group began with two octaves of English handbells. Later, two more octaves of bells and three octaves of hand chimes were added.

English hand bells come in various sizes, the smaller ones having the higher pitch tones and the larger bells having the lower base tones. The bells are made of copper and tin, cast and pitched in a factory so that heat and cold will not affect the tone. The clappers only move up and down and have special springs to prevent the clapper from resting on the bell.

Contact the library at 244-7065.

Choral concert

The Acadia Choral Society will be joined for its December concerts by soloists Katelyn Parker Bray, Suzanne Eaton, Marcia Gronewold Fly, Pamela Smith, Rogan Winch and Isaac Bray.

The Acadia Choral Society will perform Saturday, Dec. 1 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 2 at 3 p.m. in Bar Harbor at St. Savior’s Episcopal Church and the following Sunday, Dec. 9 at 3 p.m. at St Joseph’s Catholic Church in Ellsworth.

The “Christmas Old and New” choral program will include works by J.S. Bach and John Rutter.

The program begins with Bach’s famous oratorio, “Magnificat,” his first major liturgical composition on a Latin text. “It is most commonly performed during the Christmas season for the feast of Visitation,” a statement from the group said. “First presented by the ACS exactly 25 years ago, both chorus and instrumentalists look forward to celebrating that anniversary this season.”

The second half of the program will be Christmas songs by Rutter, one of the most celebrated and successful composer of carols alive today. The most recent of his numerous commissioned works is the new anthem, “This Is The Day,” with he composed for the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton in 2011.

The concert, led by guest conductor, Joan Kroehler and guest accompanist Robin Ann Barron will also include an audience sing along, “giving everyone the chance to celebrate the joys of the season through this exciting event!” the statement said.

Tickets are sold for a suggested donation of $15 per person or $45 per family. They are available at Sherman’s Books and Fiore in Bar Harbor, the Southwest Harbor Library, the SevenArts Gallery in Ellsworth and at the door.

Contact Joan Kroehler at [email protected] or 947-7804. Visit


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