Make Music Winter, Friday, Dec. 21st

Bell by Bell 

Artist Tom Peyton and friends lead this popular community parade through the East Village. Participants are each given a color-coded hand bell that plays a specific note. As the ensemble wends its way through the streets of the neighborhood, a team of conductors wave corresponding colored flags in time with a series of specially curated compositions, prompting participants to collectively contribute to sonorous, atmospheric soundscapes that intensify as the group learns to work and play together.

The parade kicks off from Astor Place Plaza and heads east to wrap up at Two Boots Pizza, at the corner Avenue A and E 3rd Street, where participants can warm up with free slices and soda courtesy of the restaurant.

A Make Music first! On December 21st, as part of Make Music Winter 2018, two groups will cross paths in NYC and perform a collaborative piece together. Tilted Axes: Music for Mobile Electric Guitars’ Patrick Grant and Bell By Bell’s Tom Peyton will have their groups perform at The Alamo, the Astor Place Cube, ca. 5:55 pm to ring in the new season with the premiere of a new composition, ‘Tiltinnabulation.’

Meet at Alamo “Cube” in Astor Place Plaza, 149-179 E 8th Street, at 5:30 PM to practice up for a 5:45 PM parade start time. Take the 6 train to Astor Place or R/W trains to Eighth Street.

Hand bells on loan will be distributed to the first hundred participants to arrive. Participants are welcome to simply show up ready to ring in the winter solstice, but if you know you will be coming ahead of time please send a courtesy email with the subject line “Bell by Bell” to so that we know how many paraders to expect.

A musician and urban geographer, Tom Peyton is captivated by the unintentional, immersive soundscapes created through the everyday functioning of cities. His work builds upon existing aural experiences through physical, percussive engagement with the built environment. In addition to composing urban interventions, Tom is also a musician and founding member of DoTank:Brooklyn and Nuit Blanche New York.

Avenue A & East 3rd St. is holy turf for Two Boots. We began at 37 Ave. A in 1987, with Two Boots Restaurant, and we’re now across the street, at 42 Ave. A, with Two Boots East Village. This location included Two Boots Video for 18 years – which specialized in indie and art films – and still offers comfy booth seating, a big-screen TV for sports games & video screenings, and – good news! – beer & wine. It’s also a showcase for our local artistic community, including JC Pinto’s mosaic tribute to Loisaida poet Bimbo Rivas, extraordinary exterior signs by Julie Wilson and hand-painted tiles by the late, great George Schneeman. And check out the pizza crust embedded in the collage counter – left behind the immortal Iggy Pop!

The Village Alliance manages the new public plazas at Astor Place, the nexus point of a young, exciting, vibrant and artistic community where East and West Villages meet.  For 25 years, the Village Alliance has been a leading advocate for the community, working with area businesses, residents, cultural and academic institutions to ensure that Greenwich Village and Astor Place continue to grow and succeed.  Our mission is to create a cleaner, safer, greener, attractive and enjoyable neighborhood by providing supplemental sanitation and public safety services, graffiti removal, landscaping and beautification initiatives, economic development and community revitalization initiatives, business marketing and promotions, streetscape enhancements, public art, tourist information and free events.

Bell by Bell features additional hand bell music compositions from composers Eric Beach, Dan Edinberg (The Stepkids), Nat Evans, Eric Frederic, Amy Garapic, Robert Honstein, Matt Marble and Alex Waterman.

Illustration by Kyle Lambert of Callout Creative