Palm Sunday AM At The Carillon

Yesterday morning was even more special at the YMCA Carillon because it was "Palm Sunday." The students met us in the lobby and were eager to play the carillon, especially since it was Palm Sunday and they would never have an opportunity to do that again in their lifetime. I took only Easter tunes to play. With the many people from all over the world in the city to see the Catholic procession that afternoon, we were hoping to enrich their day as the bells rang out Christians tunes. Upon arriving in the lobby, they saw one of their professors from the Jerusalem Center so posed for a photo. The hotel is beautiful inside and I couldn't resist taking more photos to add to my collection. The ceilings are lovely and each is unique in design. The blue windows are gorgeous! Once we were inside the YMCA, we climbed 5 flights of a very small and winding staircase to the room where the carillon is located. The bells of various sizes are located up two more flights of stairs in the tower. Since we had a few extra minutes, we wanted to show them to the student. Since most of the students play piano, they were excited to play some Easter music. We rang in the hour at 11 AM to start. To make the carillon play, you must pull down on the levers which are labeled with the name of each note. There is a practice carillon that does not broadcast which allows the students to prepare to play. When they feel secure about their music it is time from them to hop on the "hot seat" and perform. It can be rather nerve-wracking just to know you can't make mistakes and if you do, everyone in the city will hear you but the students did great because they had musical backgrounds. Each of the students took turns playing the right hand of the music and another playing one note in the bass. You can't play full chords on the carillon or the sounds become muddled. Note: The carillon on the right is the one to practice on. The bench where Katelin is the big one. Garth and I give the students moral support by counting out loud in the effort to help them stay together and from playing too fast. /div> We took a hymn book to play familiar Easter hymns and I know this was one day the students will never forget. It was such a fun hour and we always appreciate getting better acquainted with the students. Here are a few more photos before we left the YMCA. Everyone had their cameras ready to send videos to their parents. A few of the girls took the very small elevator down to the first level with me and Courtney suggested we sing, hoping our voices could be heard below. This was really fun and we are certainly going to miss these students who come from all walks of life! I am sure their experience for one semester in Israel has been as life-changing as ours. Can you tell how much fun we are having in Jerusalem? We look forward when our family will visit us in this amazing place and hope everyone will plan to be in Jerusalem on a Sunday so we can take them to Jerusalem's beloved carillon!