In 1988, the University of Notre Dame Campus Ministry department first purchased a small set of Schulmerich bells. Thirty years later, the choir has expanded to cover more than five full octaves, providing music ministry to the Basilica of the Sacred Heart, the South Bend community, and parishes around the United States. Our previous director, Karen Schneider-Kirner, retired in the summer of 2020 and we are excited to welcome David Marshall as our new director!
The ensemble consists of two sections: the Coppers and the Bronze. The Bronze choir consist of 14 experienced ringers who regularly play at Basilica Masses. In 2014, they traveled to Toronto and Montereal to visit parishes and pilgrimage sites established by the Congregation of the Holy Cross, the order which founded Notre Dame. In 2017, they traveled to China to perform at the inauguration of Notre Dame’s Beijing Global Gateway in China in addition to playing at Peking and Chengdu Universities and various cathedrals. They have also toured extensively in the U.S., most recently visiting New York, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Ohio, and Tennessee. Their unique tours include solo pieces, hymns and psalms which the audience can sing along to, and collaboration with various instrumentalists. Members of the group have also arranged and composed a wealth of pieces for the choir.
The Coppers section was founded in the Fall of 2017. The group is primarily made up of beginner ringers who are expressing their love for music in a new way. The Coppers group focuses on learning how to play hand bells and plays regularly at dorm Masses.
We are currently looking for new ringers for both of our choirs – please reach out to us if you are interested!