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Dinner Brings in Ringing Endorsement


Fund-Raising Dinner Raises $4,797 for UC Riverside Carillon

Final Count for Money Raised July 19

(August 24, 2004)

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Mary Lee Reynolds shows off a carillon print by UCR alumna Judy Field-BakerEnlarge

Mary Lee Reynolds shows off a carillon print by UCR alumna Judy Field-Baker

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (Aug. 24, 2004) -- The Friends of the Carillon are reporting a final count on money raised during a fund-raising dinner Monday, July 19, which included duets on the carillon by University Carillonneur David Christensen and guest carillonneur, Anne Rothfarb.

"People have been very generous and even after paying for the dinner we were able to raise $4,797," said Rothfarb, treasurer of the friends group.

The evening was open to the public and the music was free, but many carillon fans donated money above and beyond the cost of their dinner, which will go directly to the ongoing expenses for the operation of the campus’ landmark musical instrument. Riverside Mayor Ron Loveridge spoke during dinner, and Chancellor France Cordova expressed the campus' support for the tower.

After dinner and the concert, which included classic folk songs, some Bach and a booming rendition of “The Stars and Stripes Forever,” guests met the performers and viewed the bells from the cabin at the top of the tower. During the concert, video screens placed at the bottom of the tower showed live pictures of the players' technique.

“The committee was very heartened by the number of people who attended the concert, who expressed their interest and who even have asked to become a friend of the carillon, said Rothfarb, who also plays the carillon. "We were extremely pleased by the number of people who came and their comments. We have plans to do many more activities in the future."

The event was on July 19, which happens to be the birthday of the late William H. Reynolds, a founding faculty member who selected the bells for the campus while he served as chair of the Music Department. “Bill always wanted to find a way to provide permanent support for the carillon,” said his widow, Mary Lee Reynolds, who helped organize the event, and was presented with a framed print of the carillon during the dinner. “We don’t want these beautiful bells to fall silent.”

In 1964, Reynolds toured existing carillons around the world and chose the Paccard Foundry of France to cast the bells. The 48 bells in the UC Riverside bell tower are considered some of the finest in the world. The largest bell weighs almost two and one half tons. All the bells are played from a keyboard in a room atop the tower. The tower and bells were the donation of Philip and Dorothy Boyd, long-time University supporters, and were installed in 1966. It is currently one of only five true carillons in California. All expenses, including maintenance and the carillonneur's salary, are paid by private donations.

A full list of pieces played that night is available on a website created to bring the sound of the bells online: www.belltower.ucr.edu

The University of California, Riverside (www.ucr.edu) is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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