Daniel M. Reck performs in Nashville, Tenn.MARCH 11, 2010 — NASHVILLE, TENN. — For some, spring break means a lazy week on the beach, but for fourteen students from Monmouth College (Illinois) and their advisor, Daniel M. Reck, this week is about hard work.

Reck, a member of the Shadows of Bronze, was quoted by the College's website as explaining the Alternative Spring Break contingent would be "working with several different groups, and what’s exciting to me is that they’ll be doing more human service work than they’ve ever done before”  Reck is Assistant Director of Greek Life, Leadership and Involvement at the college.

“In the past, they’ve done more physical jobs. They’ll still be doing some of that, but they’re also going to work with some elementary school students and with some senior citizens,” Reck said.  The service included lifting spirits with music performed by Reck and his students.

Union Church of HinsdaleAPRIL 10, 2010 — HINSDALE, ILL. — "Simple Gifts" and "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot" will begin the 8:00 and 10:00 AM services tomorrow morning.  Michael B. Surratt and Daniel M. Reck, members of the Shadows of Bronze, will play piano and handbells throughout each service.

"It's great to come home to Union Church," says Reck, who grew up in Hinsdale, a suburb of Chicago.  "I've enjoyed making music with many different congregations, but it's never the same as the one you grew up in," he says.  Reck first learned to play handbells at Union Church in 1993 and has been ringing ever since.  At first he rang with the middle school-aged ensemble at the church, then with the Allegro Handbell Ensemble, and eventually becoming a soloist.

Surratt is the church's Director of Music Ministries and Organist, a position he has held since 1971.  In that role, he also directs the handbell ensembles.  Elsewhere in the handbell world, he has been an occasional contributor to Overtones, a journal centered on the instrument and those who play it, build it, and write music for it.

Daniel M.  Reck, Michael B. Surratt, and Rebecca M. Johnson are the Shadows of  Bronze, a trio incorporating handbells, keyboards, and wind  instruments.JUNE 19, 2010 — HINSDALE, ILL. — Have you heard The Who's "Pinball Wizard" played on handbells?  The Shadows of Bronze, featuring handbell ringer Daniel M. Reck and pianist Michael B. Surratt, will perform this work and about a dozen others at concerts in the Chicago suburbs next weekend.

Reck and Surratt, along with flautist Rebecca M. Johnson, form a trio which performs a wide repertoire of music ranging from the sixteenth to twenty-first centuries.  Recognizable pops pieces like "Pinball Wizard" and "Plink, Plank, Plunk!" will be performed alongside stirring arrangements of "Amazing Grace" and of the hymn tune "Hyfrydol." [Video of "Symphonia on Hyfrydol"]

"The goal of the Shadows of Bronze is to engage our audience with an exciting program showcasing the many different ways that handbells can be used to perform music," says Reck, one of the group's founders.  "Many think of handbells as an instrument limited to playing hymns on Sunday morning and carols during the Christmas season."

In addition to recognizable songs like "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot [Video]," the Shadows of Bronze will also perform two pieces written specifically for handbells.  One, "Canzona" was co-composed by Caroline Harnley, who is affiliated with another group which uses handbells in a unique way: The Marching Handbell Choir has paraded for the Tournament of Roses Parade and is comprised of members from California, Oregon, and Washington.

"We have everything from the sublime to the ridiculous," says Reck, "but that is part of our educational and musical mission.  Not only do we want to play beautiful music, but to play beautiful music no one expects to hear come from our particular instruments."  Reck has performed on handbells for over 15 years, and Surratt has been a pianist and organist over four decades.  Johnson will not be performing on this program.

The Shadows of Bronze is giving a free concert on Sunday, June 27, 2010, at 1:30 PM at the Union Church of Hinsdale, located at 137 South Garfield Avenue.  The trio will give an educational demonstration the day before in Burr Ridge.  Both appearances will accept free-will offerings, which will be contributed in part back to the hosts' cultural programming missions.

Daniel M.  Reck, Michael B. Surratt, and Rebecca M. Johnson are the Shadows of  Bronze, a trio incorporating handbells, keyboards, and wind  instruments.SEPTEMBER 21, 2010 — HINSDALE, ILL. — Next month, the Shadows of Bronze will be appearing at venues along the Mississippi River valley in western Illinois.

The Shadows of Bronze, featuring handbell ringer Daniel M. Reck and pianist Michael B. Surratt, perform an hour-long concert featuring a variety of music from classical to classic rock.

Reck and Surratt, along with flautist Rebecca M. Johnson, form a trio which performs a wide repertoire of music ranging from the sixteenth to twenty-first centuries.  Recognizable pops pieces like "Pinball Wizard" and "Plink, Plank, Plunk!" will be performed alongside stirring arrangements of "Amazing Grace" and of the hymn tune "Hyfrydol." [Video of "Symphonia on Hyfrydol"]

"The goal of the Shadows of Bronze is to engage our audience with an exciting program showcasing the many different ways that handbells can be used to perform music," says Reck, one of the group's founders.  "Many think of handbells as an instrument limited to playing hymns on Sunday morning and carols during the Christmas season."

In addition to recognizable songs like "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot [Video]," the Shadows of Bronze will also perform two pieces written specifically for handbells.  One, "Canzona" was co-composed by Caroline Harnley, who is affiliated with another group which uses handbells in a unique way: The Marching Handbell Choir has paraded for the Tournament of Roses Parade and is comprised of members from California, Oregon, and Washington.

"We have everything from the sublime to the ridiculous," says Reck, "but that is part of our educational and musical mission.  Not only do we want to play beautiful music, but to play beautiful music no one expects to hear come from our particular instruments."  Reck has performed on handbells for over 15 years, and Surratt has been a pianist and organist over four decades.  Johnson will not be performing on this program.

The final plans for the concerts are still being worked out, but performances are scheduled for the evening of Friday, November 19 and the afternooon of Saturday, November 20.  Both appearances will accept free-will offerings, which will be contributed in part back to the hosts' cultural programming missions.

Daniel M.  Reck, Michael B. Surratt, and Rebecca M. Johnson are the Shadows of  Bronze, a trio incorporating handbells, keyboards, and wind  instruments.NOVEMBER 4, 2010 — MONMOUTH, ILL. — Later this month, the Shadows of Bronze will perform free concerts featuring a variety of music from classical to classic rock in Monmouth and Dubuque, Iowa.

On Friday, November 19, the First Lutheran Church of Monmouth will host handbell ringer Daniel M. Reck and pianist Michael B. Surratt at 7:00 PM as part of the church's ongoing community concert series.

The next day, they will appear at 5:00 PM at the First Congregational United Church of Christ in Dubuque, Iowa.

"The goal of the Shadows of Bronze is to engage our audience with an exciting program showcasing the many different ways that handbells can be used to perform music," says Reck, one of the group's founders.  "Many think of handbells as an instrument limited to playing hymns on Sunday morning and carols during the Christmas season."

Reck and Surratt, along with flautist Rebecca M. Johnson, form a trio which performs a wide repertoire of music ranging from the sixteenth to twenty-first centuries.  Recognizable pops pieces like "Pinball Wizard" and "Plink, Plank, Plunk!" will be performed alongside stirring arrangements of "Amazing Grace" and of the hymn tune "Hyfrydol." [Video of "Symphonia on Hyfrydol"]

In addition to recognizable songs like "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot [Video]," the Shadows of Bronze will also perform two pieces written specifically for handbells.  One, "Canzona" was co-composed by Caroline Harnley, who is affiliated with another group which uses handbells in a unique way: The Marching Handbell Choir has paraded for the Tournament of Roses Parade and is comprised of members from California, Oregon, and Washington.

"We have everything from the sublime to the ridiculous," says Reck, "but that is part of our educational and musical mission.  Not only do we want to play beautiful music, but to play beautiful music no one expects to hear come from our particular instruments."  Reck has performed on handbells for over 15 years, and Surratt has been a pianist and organist over four decades.  Johnson will not be performing on this program.

Both appearances will accept free-will offerings, which will be contributed in part back to the hosts' cultural programming missions.

Review AtlasNOVEMBER 15, 2010 — MONMOUTH, ILL. — The Review Atlas newspaper featured this Friday's concert with the Shadows of Bronze on the front page in their November 13-14 edition.  "Daniel Reck, Michael Surratt and Rebecca Johnson make up the musical group," says Review Atlas reporter Leanne Moore, "which brings together handbells, piano and wind instruments to create a unique sound of music."

The article highlights the Shadows of Bronze's performance at the First Lutheran Church of Monmouth, scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. on Friday. 

"We try to be educational in our program," says the ensemble's handbell ringer, Daniel Reck, as quoted in the article. "Lots of people have seen handbell ensembles, but we try to teach about how the instrument actually works, the history of the music and literature and show off techniques used to play handbells."

Daniel M. ReckMoore detailed the concert program, which will be repeated at 5 p.m. on Saturday at the First Congregational United Church of Christ in Dubuque, Iowa: "The first half of the concert will be American music. Some of those songs include 'An American Fanfare,' 'The Star Spangled Banner,' 'Swing Low, Sweet Chariot,' 'Amazing Grace,' and one composed by Reck entitled, 'A Hope.'"

The second half of the performance will include some pieces for the holiday season but also songs of a secular historical nature, says Moore. The concerts will end with "Symphonia on Hyfrydol," which "uses neat techniques, including … hanging bells … (played) with mallets," Reck said in the article.

"Besides the enjoyment factor, Reck and Surratt want to support cultural arts programing in general," said Moore, noting the ensemble's philanthropic mission. "In other concerts when donations have been accepted, Shadows of Bronze gave the proceeds back to the venue to make it easier for them to support other cultural programming."

 

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