A Premier Singaporean Handbells Ensemble, Educating the Young, Sharing our Music, Inspiring the People & Reaching Out to the Southeast-Asian Region.
HongKong International Handbells Olympics
Gold with Honours 2013 (Large Ensemble – Advanced) Gold 2013 (Small Ensemble – Advanced) Silver 2013 (Small Ensemble – Junior)
Singapore Book of Records
Longest Handbell Performance 2013 (24 Hours)
Largest Handbell Ensemble 2013 & 2017
National Arts Council (Singapore)
NAC Friend of the Arts Award 2012 (Beneficiary)
The award-winning MINISTRY OF BELLz (MOB) was established in June 2007, with its main objective of creating an active community handbell ensemble for current and former school ringers, to continue their passion in the art of handbell ringing. The ‘MINISTRY OF BELLZ Ltd’ was incorporated in Singapore as a “not-for-profit” arts organisation in April 2013
The MOB is Singapore’s ONLY independent handbell ensemble, outside Schools & Churches. The team’s performance engagements include Birthday Parties, Weddings, Church Celebrations, Christmas & Open Season, Corporate & Charity Events, Government & Private Functions. Up to date, the team has amassed more than 330 shows including performances in Hong Kong (3x), Malaysia (3x), Japan (2x), UK, Indonesia, New Zealand, USA, Canada, South Korea & Taiwan (2x). The MOB also organises the biennial “SINGBellz FEST”, Singapore’s very own Handbells’ Festival, & “AFTERNOON WITH THE BELLZ™”, a day of handbells event. In 2013, the MOB successfully launched its “LEND-A-HAND(bellz)” Community/Charity Program, to reach out to the community and under-privileged. It renamed this program as MOB-CSR in December 2015, headed by MOB’s Assistant Leader, Rachel Ng. The MOB has 5 programs endorsed under the NAC Arts Education Programme for schools & is recognised as an Artiste In School Scheme (AISS) Arts-Partner for Special (SPED) Schools to provide handbell/chimes experience for Persons with Special Needs. The MOB also supports the NIE in music teacher-education by providing ensemble experiences & assessments while teacher-trainees are undergoing their B.A, Diploma, Advanced Diploma & PGDE training. The MOB was the 1st arts group in Singapore to have successfully organised and presented a sensory/autism-friendly concert in Singapore, in January 2016.
The MOB attained the Gold with Honours Award, in addition to a Gold & Silver Awards at the Hong Kong International Handbell Olympics 2013. The MOB also co-organised & anchored the Singapore Book of Records LARGEST HANDBELL ENSEMBLE project & is a proud holder of the LONGEST HANDBELL PERFORMANCE (24hrs non-stop) records in Singapore.
The team’s repertoire includes Christmas Carols, Children Tunes, Evergreens, Light Latin, Disney, Contemporary, Jazz, Fusion, Collection of Singapore & Asian Tunes as well as World Folk Songs, effectively fusing the genres with a wide array of ethnic percussive & keyboard instruments, creating a Truly UNIQUELY SINGAPOREAN HANDBELL SOUND.
The MOB has collaborated with the following distinguished guest conductors/artistes/groups, including Emily Li (Hong Kong), Toshikazu Yoshida (Japan), Emmy Okazawa-Bortolin (Canada/Japan), Debbie Rice (USA), John Hooper (Canada), Tomoko Tanimoto (Japan), Christopher Fong (Singapore), Bank Wu (Taiwan), Sung Jae-Woel (South Korea), Tsugane Ikumi (Singapore/Japan), Helimmi Ahmad Ibrahim (Singapore), Tama Goh (Singapore), Kevin Ko (Hong Kong), Michael Gaspar (Singapore), Jeremy Monteiro (Singapore), Lim Yau (Singapore), Darius Lim (Singapore), Adrian Chiang (Singapore), Adrian Tan (Singapore), Maris Sirmais (Latvia), Freda Lim (Singapore), Francis Liew (Singapore), Ben Wong (Singapore), Julian Wong (Singapore), R Chandran (Singapore), HeartBeat Percussion Ensemble of the Tampines North CC (Singapore), Philharmonic Youth Winds (Singapore), The Philharmonic Winds (Singapore), ONE Chamber Choir (Singapore), The Conservatory Orchestra (Singapore), Singapore Wind Symphony (Singapore), VOCO All-Ladies Choir (Singapore), NAFA Orchestra (Singapore), EVOKX Choir (Singapore), Yeh’s Ringers (Hong Kong), Kinjo Gakuin University Handbell Choir (Japan), YAMATO Handbell Choir (Japan), Baba Richard Tan (Singapore), Malcolm Wilson (Scotland) & Mediacorp artistes Zoe Tay, Hong Huifang, Xiang Yun, Rebecca Lim, Vivian Lai (Singapore).
In 2013, Cai Ximin was appointed Young Associate Conductor of the MOB, a testimony to the successful “youth ringer-to-conductor development program” of the MOB. Presently, another MOB ringer (Debbie Chng) is undergoing this program.
The MOB’s pioneer members include LCM Level 4 & 5 certified Ringers, former semi-professional percussionists, GOLD w/HONOURS, GOLD & SILVER Award ringers from the Singapore Youth Festival as well as Handbells/Chimes Instructors.
The MOB is founded, funded & led by multiple-SYF Gold & Gold with Honours plus two-time NAC Friend of the Arts Award recipient, BABA DAMIEN LIM. The MOB is a major supporter of the “HANDBELLS ASIA” project, the “London College of Music (LCM) Handbell Assessment”, & the “Handbell Ringers of Singapore (HRSG).”
Coming together with the common passion of Handbells Ringing & Music Making, the ensemble is recognised as a “Leader in Handbells Music” in Singapore & Southeast-Asia.