Nollirac Carllon

Nollirac Carllon


Composer: Fred Gramann

Handbells used: 7 (8) octaves  (opt Bb1)

Handchimes used: 3 octaves

Level:  5

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Nollirac Carillon! What an interesting title … is there a cathedral called ‘Nollirac’ somewhere, one wonders?  Well – only in the fertile and creative mind of Fred Gramann!

Fred’s program notes read: 

               The word nollirac is carillon spelled backwards. This is reflected in the music by certain motifs being first heard backwards (in reverse order like the word nollirac) and then forwards (like the    word carillon). These three examples [shown in the score] show how the motifs designated by the letter A are the B motifs in reverse order… the notes CDFEAGCB are reversed to become          BCGAEFDC.  

 Tempo is q = 124 (Allegro) and  mixed meters abound with 7/8 being used most frequently. Generous use of LV creates the carillon sound with RT, malleted notes and occasional marts providing exciting emphasis. Accents are essential to ensure precision and dynamics are important as this music is unrelenting in its forward movement. A brief handchime section brings a delightful change in texture and style although the pulse continues into a mostly ‘stopped technique’ section which leads back to the opening 7/8 pattern and style. Did we mention that there are wonderful opportunities for ringers to hone their reading and bell-changing skills due to many accidentals?


Paragraphs could be written to adequately define this amazing work – so please look and listen – and be excited by this original creation that will challenge and delight the most accomplished groups!

Octave Ranges
6+ Octaves
Original composition
School and Youth
Secular - general usage
Level of Difficulty
Level 5

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