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An Interview with Wylie Crawford, University carillonneur 1984–2015

This interview was conducted at Rockefeller Memorial Chapel, in the playing cabin at the top of the bell tower. It took place on September 30, 2015, the day before Mr. Crawford retired. Topics include: Mr. Crawford's background and career, the history of bell towers and carillon playing, and the carillon at Rockefeller Memorial Chapel in Hyde Park, Chicago. Mr. Crawford is currently the President of the World Carillon Federation.

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Anonymous 4 rings down the curtain with a final holiday concert

When four female singers gathered in New York in 1986 for informal readings of a cappella Medieval chant, little could they have envisioned a three-decade career brimming with countless performances around the globe and 20 recordings with 20 million copies sold.

An impressively large crowd gathered to hear Anonymous 4 Sunday in Hyde Park, grateful to be chosen as the locale for their last local touring date, in the University of Chicago Presents series.

No doubt many of their devoted fans in the gargantuan Rockefeller Chapel hoped that the quartet would reconsider its decision to disband. But with other projects in the pipeline for each member, it appears that the end has indeed come, even if a similar and ultimately premature pronouncement was made in 2004. If the near-perfection of their vocal purity has frayed a bit since their early days, they easily held listeners in rapt attention throughout the 70-minute program.

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You ust Hear "Hotline Bling" on Church Bells

Buzzfeed features Joey Brink taking requests on the carillon!

In 1932, John D. Rockefeller gifted a 72-bell, 100-ton bronze carillon to the University of Chicago. In 2015, the University Carillonneur performed Drake’s Hotline Bling at lunchtime on a Friday. To reach the carillon, we climbed 271 steps to the top of the tower. In the immortal words of Drizzy, “Started from the bottom, now we here.” You have to see this [see the article for the awesome pictures!]

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Initial Events of Shakespeare 400 Project Announced

Quire & Place concert announced as part of Chicago Shakespeare 400

Shakespeare 400 Chicago – the yearlong international festival that will run throughout 2016, and is designed to commemorate the four hundred years since Shakespeare’s death in 1616 – has announced the events planned for January through March, 2016. The full line-up of the year’s productions and other events will be announced in January.

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Rockefeller Chapel Choir casts a wide musical net in Kristallnacht homage

Musical tributes to the victims of the Holocaust are plentiful, but likeminded tributes to the musical culture that the Holocaust nearly destroyed are more rare.

Such a tribute took place Sunday afternoon in Rockefeller Memorial Chapel. Co-organized by James Kallembach and Cantor David Berger as part of the University of Chicago’s Quire & Place series, the concert was titled “Voices of Kristallnacht,” marking the atrocities of November 9-10, 1938.

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Rockefeller hosts Shrine of Christ the King after fire

Rockefeller Chapel hosts Latin mass at short notice

Shrine of Christ the King has raised $50,000 in less than month since a fire ravaged the church.

Rev. Matthew Talarico, a canon at the shrine at 6401 S. Woodlawn Ave., said the congregation has found great support among its neighbors as the church works on rebuilding after the Oct. 7 fire.

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Review: Summer music at Hyde Park landmarks

The Laura Spelman Rockefeller Memorial Carillon in Rockefeller Chapel at the University of Chicago is the world’s second largest musical instrument. The largest is its sister carillon (also named for Laura Spelman Rockefeller) at the Riverside Church in New York City.

This year, the University of Chicago marks half a century of carillon festivals. The 50th annual festival, titled “The Bells of Summer,” runs through August 23. Every Sunday beginning at 5 pm, there is a free, one-hour performance open to the public. Most folks sit on the spacious lawn of Rockefeller Chapel, 5850 S. Woodlawn Ave., while some sit inside the chapel to enjoy the music and the interior architecture at the same time. There is also a large screen television that offers a view of the carillonneur, who performs from the bell tower, 271 steps high into the chapel.

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