Handbell Laureate Award

International Handbell Laureate Award


The International Handbell Laureate Award is presented by the International Handbell Committee to individuals who have over a period of years provided an outstanding contribution to the international development and/or performance of tune ringing on handbells. The status is deemed to be the highest award in the field of tune ringing on handbells in the international community.

The criteria for the award shall include:

An extended commitment over a period of time to the art of tune ringing on handbells at an international level. This commitment may be in the form of:

Teaching/Conducting that has raised the musical standards for this instrument

Composer’s compositions that have gained international prominence for use of the handbell idiom

Service to the International Handbell Committee and/or international community that has far exceeded normal expectations.

Extension of the art of ringing into significant new arenas and/or international populations.

The contribution shall have been made beyond the scope of personal interest or monetary gain.

Benefits to Recipients

Recipients of the International Handbell Laureate Award shall be acknowledged and recognized by all International Handbell Guilds for the significance of contributions to the International Community of handbell ringing.

Recipients may be offered an opportunity by hosting Guilds to prepare a message for the program booklet of the International Handbell Symposium.

International Handbell Laureates in attendance at the International Handbell Symposium may be invited to participate in opening and/or closing chords for the event.

International Handbell Laureates may upon request receive minutes of meetings and records of note electronically from the International Handbell Committee (IHC).


1. Announcement of the recipient(s) of the Award will be made at the International Handbell Symposium.

2. There will be a maximum of 2 recipients at each Symposium.

3. There will be a maximum of 6 living holders of the award. Posthumous awards may be also be made.

4. Nominations for the award shall only be made by the Board or Governing Body of the Guilds forming the International Handbell Committee (IHC).

5. International Handbell Guilds shall not be limited to the nomination of members of their own Guild.

6. Requests for nominations from the International Handbell Guilds shall be invited by the Executive Director of the IHC no later than 12 months prior to the International Symposium.

7. Letters for nominations documenting requirements contained in the “Criteria” shall be sent to the Executive Director of the IHC and must be received a minimum of 9 months before the next scheduled IHC Meeting.

8. If no worthy nominees are forthcoming in the process, the IHC Committee is not obligated to confer an award.

9. The Executive Director shall circulate all nominations to the members of the IHC 9 months before the next scheduled meeting.

a. Letters of nominations will be circulated in confidence to each IHC member for evaluation against the established criteria for the award.

b. A mandatory tick box will be required of each voting member to state: ‘I support the nomination’ or ‘I do not support the nomination’. The selection must be accompanied by supporting reasons.

c. These completed forms are submitted back to the IHC Executive Director for compilation which shall be provided in confidence to IHC voting members. If there is obvious consensus among all guilds a motion shall be requested to formally confer the nominee(s) as International Handbell Laureate(s). Upon confirmation IHC Executive Director shall notify award recipients.

Aware Recipients

The 2014 inaugural awards in Jeju, Korea were presented to

  • Mr. David Davidson (Posthumous)
  • Mrs. Sun-Joo Shin (HRJ)