A Big Welcome to our New Bellmaster and Choral Director
We are excited to welcome to Velda Rose United Methodist Church
our new Bellmaster and Choral Director, Douglas J. Benton.
Doug comes to us with a rich and diversified experience. He studied Organ
Performance at both Arizona State University and Northern Arizona
University, where he graduated Cum Laude in 1992 with a Bachelor of
Arts in Organ Performance.
Doug has spent over fifty years as a professional church musician in
the Phoenix area. He has served on State, Area and National Boards of
the Handbell Musicians of America (formerly American Guild of English
Handbell Ringers), including Chair of the Education Department, and is a
frequent contributor for Overtones, including the first major research on
Carpel Tunnel Syndrome and Handbell Ringing. He has also directed
massed choirs at National, Area, State and Local Festivals, and has been
a clinician at international, national, area, and state events.
Doug has served on the board of the Central Arizona Chapter of the
American Guild of Organists, and is currently the Chair of Repertoire and
Resources for Music in Worship for the Arizona Chapter of the American
Choral Directors Association.
He is an ASCP award winning composer/arranger of music for brass,
choir, handbells, orchestra, and organ. Most recently, until his retirement,
Doug was the full time Director of Music Ministries for Gold Canyon
United Methodist Church in Gold Canyon, Arizona. There he
administered a large choral program and directed an orchestra and
handbells. He also managed a ten-event Performing Arts Series annually
for the church, and hosted the Canyon Sounds Series for the Gold
Canyon Arts Council.
Doug brings to his ministry at Velda Rose unique gifts and graces. We
eagerly embrace him as he joins the Velda Rose family!