Message from the President- Frank DellaPenna
When I began Cast in Bronze, everyone told me I would fail, that no cared about the carillon, that the carillon could not be combined with other instruments, that no one would book the act, and no one would ever purchase a recording of the music. So, after listening to all of them, I decided, “Why not?”
As I look back, I still don’t know how I convinced people to give me a chance. But they did, and they booked me the following year, and others began to book the act until finally I was able to quit my full- time job and go on the road. I have been on tour for the last 26 years and loved every minute of it. And the reason I loved it was because of the fans!
The bells attracted the fans, who have supported the act since the beginning. Over the years the Cast in Bronze fans now constitute the largest number of people on earth that know about the carillon and care about the future of Cast in Bronze. They are the only group large enough to make a difference in the carillon world.
Now, in the twilight of my career, I have one final dream. I would like my fans to join me in creating the Cast in Bronze Society. Their financial support will create a large and powerful organization that will help preserve and promote the carillon and bell world and insure the future of Cast in Bronze.
The main objective will be to fund scholarships to qualified candidates to enroll in the North American Carillon School. Those graduates will have the opportunity to go on the road with me for on-the-job training for six months doing the Cast in Bronze show. One of those graduates will eventually succeed me when I am no longer able to perform.
There are other professional opportunities for carillon players. There are almost 200 carillons located in towers across the US. More than one-third of them are silent due to lack of players, interest or funding. The society hopes to assist by placing qualified carillon school graduates in those positions.
As the Cast in Bronze Society grows in membership there will be numerous opportunities for members to become active within the society by volunteering their time and talent to various committees that will be formed as needed. There are many projects that will make a difference, and those projects will need people to manage them. No matter what your skills, we will need people experienced in all professions that will insure our success.
I envision a vibrant organization where everyone can feel good that they are doing something unique and meaningful by helping to preserve something that is timeless. Bells and their music will last for centuries, but they need stewards to keep them alive. Make no mistake about it, without us, the bells become silent. The Cast in Bronze Society is the only group on earth that can keep the bells ringing. It is my hope that the Cast in Bronze Society becomes the “voice of the bells”.