news releases

2005.06.27 > For Immediate Release
contact: Teresa Gleason - University Affairs
phone: 402.554.2762 - email: tmgleason@mail.unomaha.edu

Carillon Concert Set for July 4 at UNO

Omaha - The bells on the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) campus will ring in honor of America Monday, July 4, in conjunction with a carillon concert set for 9 a.m.

UNO carilloneur James Johnson will perform a 30-minute concert of patriotic melodies.  The event is free and open to the public.  Attendees are invited to bring their lawn chairs, as seating will be available on the grassy area between University Library and the Strauss Performing Arts Center.

The Henningson Memorial Campanile, rising 168 feet over the UNO campus, is one of only 180 such structures in the United States.  It was donated to UNO in 1989 by the late Margre Henningson Durham and her husband, Chuck, as a standing memorial to Margre's father, mother and sister.

"The limited number of campaniles in the United States informs the unusual nature of a carillon concert and the special place this structure has on the UNO campus," said Robert Welk, dean of UNO's new College of Communication, Fine Arts and Media.  "The July 4th concert, played by the carilloneur on a mechanical keyboard at the top of the tower, annually recognizes Margre's love for her country and desire to share her blessings with her hometown community.  Besides the campanile, other Durham family projects on campus include the Durham Fountain and the Durham Science Center."

The carillon is a four-octave, acoustically balanced instrument. It consists of 47 bronze bells cast by the bellfoundry of Paccard-Fonderie de Cloches in Annecy, France.  The largest of the bells weighs 4,397 pounds and measures five feet in diameter by four feet in height.  The combined weight of the 47 bells is 24,408 pounds.

Johnson, the Spire Professor of Keyboard Studies at UNO, performs regularly scheduled carillon concerts each year.  He has earned a distinguished international reputation through his piano recordings and performances with the Royal Philharmonic in London, the Leningrad Philharmonic, the Prague Chamber Soloists, the Slovenian Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Victoria Symphony and the Boston Pops.

For more information about the July 4 concert, call (402) 554-2358.

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