My composition was written in 2003 as the UF Century Tower Carillon was expanded to its full range of 61 bells, for a dedication recital on September 11, 2003.
Shafer was a graduate student at The University of Texas at Austin (2002-10). While there she greatly expanded activity for the UT Kniker Carillon, for which I had played the dedication recital in 1987. Since my father, my sister, my wife Anna and I are all “Texas Exes,” and since Austin is my home town, I especially enjoy all these “small world” family connections: my sister-in-law and her husband still live in south Austin, and the UT tower chime in the ’30s was the first bell instrument I ever heard [Chicago’s Rockefeller Chapel carillon was the second . . .].
On April 27, 2018 Richard Drake interviewed Willis Bodine on WUFT’s Magnum Opus and discussed his legacy at the University of Florida, his composition activities since retiring, and the April 28 premiere of his new composition by the Voices Rising Community Chorus.
With a Voice of Singing (my new choral song for choir S.A.T.B., youth choir, solo clarinet, and piano) will be premiered by Voices Rising Community Chorus (VRCC) on Saturday, April 28th at First United Methodist Church Gainesville during two concerts conducted by Ruth Lewis, with special guest artist Bess de Farber (clarinet). This is the final program of the VRCC 5th anniversary season.
Here is a clip from the April 2018 Ilene Silverman Show in which Ruth Lewis and I describe the composition process from its inception. (View the entire program.)
On June 29, 2017 Wim Ruesink will perform Willis Bodine’s UT Fanfares for Carillon at the Peperbus in Zwolle as part of the summer concert series. This composition was selected as a finalist in the 2015 composition contest of the Zwolse Beiaard Stichting.
Performed at the Lutheran Church of the Ascension Atlanta on Sunday January 29, 2017: the premiere of the commissioned anthem “Voices raised to you we offer” in honor of the 500th anniversary of the reformation. Music for SATB chorus, trombone, flute and organ is by Willis Bodine, professor emeritus at University of Florida. Text is by Herman G. Sturmpfle, Jr. past dean and president of the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.