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World Bell Concert 2003

World chimes at the market of Apolda 2003 – bells were ringing in five continents – 2. August 2003 – 7 to 12 p.m.

The Treichelgruppe Schwanden, founded in 1994, consists of about 20 members. The group often performs at weddings, birthday parties and club evenings, and was honoured at the national Treichlerfest 2002 at the Swiss village of Meiringen. The group performed at the World Bell Concert 2003 and 2007.

Treicheln – Treichel or Trychel, Treicheli designates a special type of hand-wrought bell used in Switzerland. The bell has a long, bulky shape with a narrow, elliptic or rectangular opening. For centuries they have been worn by the cattle on the paddocks, so that their herdsmen know where they are and what they are up to. Treicheln are intended to decorate and calm the cows, as well as marking the lead cow. Treicheln are often a status symbol and the pride of the herdsmen and their wealthy owners. The bells and their rings were said to fend off evil spirits. While today the Treicheln’s importance on the paddocks is diminishing, the bells with richly decorated belts are often used as gifts of honour at country shows, alpine festivals, family events and anniversaries. The bells’ rings also create a pleasant background sound for festivities.

Forging a Treichel is hard manual work. The completion of the 15 production stages takes 8 to 12 hours. Every Treichel is a uniquely crafted product with its own specific ring. A large Treichel measures about 40 centimetres in height, has a volume of roughly 30 litres and weighs about 7.5 kilograms - without the belt. Some Treicheln cost up to CHF 2000.

A DVD is available: Apolda World Bell Concert 2003 with the contributions of all the participating places in five continents.

If you would like to order the DVD: thomas.bertschi@bluewin.ch