Ronald Barnes Memorial Fund

Ronald Barnes, carillonneur

Ronald Barnes, 1927-1997

Our Mission and Supportable Activities

The Guild of Carillonneurs in North America invites applications for the Ronald Barnes Memorial Fund. To honor Barnes' extraordinary contributions to the North American carillon art, the Guild established the Memorial Fund in 1998 for individuals to pursue studies, within North America, in North American carillon performance, composition, music history or instrument design. Application for the grant is open to all North Americans. The decision of the Barnes jury is announced at the annual GCNA congress held in June each year.

Grant amount available for 2019 cycle: Awards can range up to $11,800 depending on the number of successful applicants.

Applications deadline: March 1, 2019

Decision by the Jury: May 31, 2019

Notification to Applicants: June 10, 2019

Project Deadline: Successful applicants have up to two years to complete the project.

Additional information can be found under Grant Requirements below.


For nearly fifty years, Ronald Barnes (1927-1997) was a major force in establishing an American approach to carillon performance, composing and arranging. His numerous compositions and arrangements for the instrument altered the standard of the modern carillon repertoire, not only in North America but throughout the world.

Barnes began his carillon career in 1946 at the First Plymouth Congregational Church in his native Lincoln, Nebraska. He received his Bachelor of Music degree in organ from the University of Nebraska in 1950 and his Master of Arts degree in music history from Stanford University in 1961. His only formal training in carillon performance was a summer spent with Dominion Carillonneur Robert Donnell in Ottawa in 1948, the year he also joined the Guild. Between 1957 and 1961 he edited and published the Guild's The Bulletin, following which he served three terms as Guild president. From 1951 to 1962 he was University Carillonist at the University of Kansas, Lawrence. He was Cathedral Carillonneur at the National Cathedral, Washington, DC, from 1963 to 1974 and University Carillonist at the University of California, Berkeley, from 1982 until his retirement in 1995. His Berkeley tenure was marked by the founding of the Berkeley Carillon Institute, the establishment of a program of carillon performance instruction, and a prolific period of composition. In 1988 he was awarded the GCNA's Certificate of Extraordinary Service. He died on November 3, 1997 at the age of 70.

Grant Requirements for 2019

The 2019 documents include a Letter of Agreement and a Ronald Barnes Memorial Fund Application as a PDF (save to your desktop and then fill out and save) and a DOC.

For further information, contact the Barnes Fund Committee.

Grant Recipients

2018 - Jaime Fogel: for the design and production of a bell founding traveling informational exhibit.

2018 - Benjamin Sunderlin: for research into comparative bell casting techniques.

2017 - Rachel Perfecto: for the creation of an online guide to arranging music for the carillon.

2017 - Pamela Ruiter-Feenstra: for study in the preparation of a multicultural carillon composition.

2016 - Robin Austin, Lisa Lonie, and Janet Tebbel: for the creation of folder level descriptions of all materials in the Arthur Bigelow Collection at the Anton Brees Carillon Library.

2016 - Mitchell Stecker: for study of the compositional techniques of Roy Hamlin Johnson, with a focus on the Carillon Book for the Liturgical Year.

2015 - Joey Brink - for researching the design and fabrication of an affordable practice keyboard.

2014 - Frances Newell - for study of the method of carillon arrangements and transcriptions.

2013 - Andrée-Anne Doane - for compilation of a comprehensive inventory and catalogue of the carillon music of Émilien Allard.

2012 - Ed Herrmann - for high-quality audio recordings of the Rockefeller Chapel bells for practice keyboard and other uses.

2012 - Tiffany Ng - for research at Washington Memorial Carillon, Valley Forge, PA and the Netherlands Carillon, Arlington, VA on a comparative study of the recitals of Frank Péchin Law.

2011 - Sharon Hettinger - for development of a "Carillonneur Family Tree for North American Carillonneurs."

2010 - Carol Anne Taylor - for development and production of a book of carillon music appropriate to the Spanish liturgy.

2009 - (No award.)

2008 - Carol Anne Taylor - for intensive advanced study in carillon performance.

2007 - Kim Schafer - for work on doctoral thesis, "Remembering and Performing the Ideal Campus: The Sound Cultures of Interwar American Universities."

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