South Dakota Sub-Area Chair
Monica S. McGowan took her music education background, received a Bachelor of Science, Music Education degree from Chadron State College, Chadron, Nebraska and found her lifes passion in handbells. That career has led to teaching handbell choirs, students and ensembles in churches, schools and community groups throughout the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia and Puerto Rico. In 2017, she was selected to conduct the All Star Choir at the National Seminar for the Handbell Musicians of America in Anaheim, California.
Monica has served as Director of Handbells in Methodist, Lutheran and Episcopal churches from Minnesota to Louisiana. Monica served on the Area 7 AGEHR Board of Directors (1994 to 2002), was Special Interests Department Chair for the National Board of Directors, served on the National AGEHR CHIME Committee and was elected by her peers to serve as Area Representative to the AGEHR Executive Committee 1997-1998. She currently serves as Sub Area Coordinator: South Dakota for Area 7. Her articles have been published in Overtones, the journal of the Handbell Musicians of America.
Monica was accredited as Full Director and Massed Conductor Level 2 in the first Master Classes for Conducting and Conducting Massed Choirs. She has completed studies with Dr. Donald E. Allured, Dr. Paul Rosene, David R. Davidson and Dr. William Payn.
During her tenure as the founding Artistic and Music Director of Twin Cities Bronze, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota, she led the ensemble to recognition as an internationally acclaimed handbell ensemble known for its professional musical artistry. In August 2017, Monica was hired as Artistic and Music Director for Bells of the Hills, a community handbell ensemble in Rapid City, South Dakota.
Monica brings her extensive training, passion, love, enthusiasm and knowledge of handbells and handchimes to every forum and venue, providing a challenging, successful and fun experience for all its participants.