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England: What do bell ringers and astronauts have in common?

From: Rachel Louise Snyder
Series: Global Guru Radio
Length: 02:59

This week, the Global Guru ventures waaaaaayyyy up into the bell towers of an English church to learn just how mathematical -- and dangerous -- bell ringing can be. Read the full description.

02partsofabell_small The Global Guru is a weekly public radio spot that celebrates the oddities, the curiosities, the unknowns of global culture, particularly in countries where Americans have either single narrative story lines, like Afghanistan (war), Thailand (sex tourism), Rwanda, (genocide), or perhaps no story lines at all, like East Timor, Moldova, Malta, Lesotho, etc. Engaging and rich in sound, the 3:00 interstitial helps us connect to the vastness of human experience. Presenting station is WAMU in Washington, DC and sponsored by American University in DC. Some of our favorite past shows include: How do Cambodians predict the harvest each year? What messages do cigarettes send in Chinese business dealings? How did Tanzania become the capitol of barbershops? How and why does Thailand categorize food? What is Iceland’s most feared culinary delight? How do you track a Tasmanian devil? What are the hidden messages in Zulu beadwork?

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Piece Description

The Global Guru is a weekly public radio spot that celebrates the oddities, the curiosities, the unknowns of global culture, particularly in countries where Americans have either single narrative story lines, like Afghanistan (war), Thailand (sex tourism), Rwanda, (genocide), or perhaps no story lines at all, like East Timor, Moldova, Malta, Lesotho, etc. Engaging and rich in sound, the 3:00 interstitial helps us connect to the vastness of human experience. Presenting station is WAMU in Washington, DC and sponsored by American University in DC. Some of our favorite past shows include: How do Cambodians predict the harvest each year? What messages do cigarettes send in Chinese business dealings? How did Tanzania become the capitol of barbershops? How and why does Thailand categorize food? What is Iceland’s most feared culinary delight? How do you track a Tasmanian devil? What are the hidden messages in Zulu beadwork?

Broadcast History

first aired on WAMU 88.5 fm in Washington, DC

Transcript

GLOBAL GURU – England: Bell Ringers
Time: 2:57

SFX: Theme Music (Plush Interiors)

Welcome to the Global Guru. I’m Rachel Louise Snyder. Each week, we ask one simple question—just one—about somewhere in the world.

Today we’re in England, asking, “What do bell ringers and astronauts have in common?” (.11)

SFX: bells

AX: Do you want to ring Oxford or would you rather ring Kent? Kent. We’re more likely to get through Kent. One in fourth, two in thirds (.10)…(fade out)…

I’m in a village called Nettlebed, where the St. Bartholomew’s bell ringers gather for weekly practice.

The bells are numbered from the highest to the lowest note sequentially.

They’re rung in changing permutations, called methods. (.11)

AX--RE: And what we’re going to do is weave this path through all of those bells. RLS: I’m basically looking at a musical score, but with numbers and for bells.
RE: It’s hardly mu...
Read the full transcript

Musical Works

Title Artist Album Label Year Length
Ravi Shankar The Plush Interiors :00