Ray McLellan, carillonneur (1997–present)
Ray McLellan was appointed University Carillonneur at Michigan State University in 1997, where he teaches and performs on the 49-bell Beaumont Tower Carillon. McLellan earned his BA degree at Florida Southern College in Lakeland, and his MM and DMA degrees from University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. He also studied in Freiburg, Germany, and Amersfoort, The Netherlands. In addition to his work at MSU, McLellan serves as organist/music director at St. Michael the Archangel Parish in Monroe, and as organist/accompanist at Temple Beth Emeth in Ann Arbor. He has performed recitals in the USA, Canada, The Netherlands, France and Germany. McLellan currently serves on the exam committee and is co-chair of the Barnes Scholarship committee of the Guild of Carillonneurs in North America. He is also a member of the faculty of the North American Carillon School.
Margo Halsted, carillonneur (1996–1997)
Margo Halsted -- active recitalist, teacher, speaker, jurist, musicologist, and consultant -- has performed concerts in all countries with an active carillon tradition. Several of her students have passed the examination to become full members of the Guild of Carillonneurs in North America. Particularly interested in historic carillon music, she has published articles and a book on eighteenth- and nineteenth-century carillon manuscripts from Belgium. She has been a featured recitalist or speaker for four World Carillon Federation meetings. In addition to degrees from Stanford University and the University of California, Riverside, Halsted holds a diploma from the Netherlands Carillon School.
Wendell Westcott, carillonneur (1941–1987)
Wendell J. Westcott, who served as University Carillonneur at Michigan State University for more than four decades, graduated from the Royal Carillon School “Jef Denyn” (Belgium) with the highest honor ever bestowed by that institution. Westcott was the organizer and director of the Spartan Bell Ringers, a handbell organization featuring MSU students. Westcott has given concerts throughout the United States, Belgium, and the Netherlands. For more on Westcott's distinguished career and a statement by the College of Music on his death in 2010, click here.
Russell Daubert, carillonneur (1929–1941)
Russell Daubert was an athletic trainer and swimming coach in the athletic department who first played the tower chime (later a carillon) in 1929. Lacking formal training, he was only able to play the most simple of melodies on the instrument. In 1941, when control of the tower and carillon transferred from the athletic department to the College of Music, Wendell Westcott began his career of performances on the instrument.
Laurie Harkema, assistant carillonneur, has a B.A. in Music Education from Calvin College and an M.M. in Piano Performance from Michigan State University. She taught elementary school music in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and in the Okemos, Michigan Public Schools for over 20 years. Laurie has worked as a church musician in California, New Mexico, and currently is Director of the Adult Choir and an Organist/Pianist at River Terrace Church in East Lansing. She began studying the carillon with Ray McLellan in 2016 and is a member of the Guild of Carillonneurs in North America.
Sally Harwood, assistant carillonneur, began her carillon study in 1996 as the first student of Margo Halsted at the newly refurbished Beaumont Tower Carillon. She has studied with Ray McLellan since 1997. Harwood was admitted to full membership in the Guild of Carillonneurs in North America in 2000 after successfully completing her advancement recital at the Guild Congress in Frederick, Maryland. Her other primary musical activity involves playing recorders and krumhorns with the Namenlos Early Music Consort. Sally serves as an associate general counsel at Michigan State University.
Patricia Johannes, assistant carillonneur, a piano player from the age of six, graduated from Michigan State with a degree in elementary education and a minor in music. She taught early elementary school for 17 years. She led elementary boy and church youth choirs and served in several churches as a pianist. She has studied with Ray McLellan since 1998 and is an associate member of the Guild of Carillonneurs of North America.
William C. McHarris, assistant carillonneur, is a professor of chemistry and physics at Michigan State University. He has studied the carillon since 1996, first with Margo Halsted and later with Ray McLellan. He composed a set of eight carillon pieces, “Venturesome Inventions,” which was published by American Carillon Music Editions.