Nozomu ABE
Director, arranger, composer
HRJ board member


Graduated from Doshisha University with BA in Divinity in 1961. Graduated from Osaka College of Music (studied vocal music) in 1965. Had performed in many operas as belonging to Kansai Opera up to 1993, also been appointed as a soloist for church music.
His involvement in handbell music started in 1980 with the foundation of
Kobe YMCA Bell-choir.
In the past international handbell symposia, he has conducted two massed ringing pieces, “So-ran Bushi” (1988, Exeter) and “Otemoyan” (2000, Birmingham), both his arrangement of old Japanese melodies. Since 1988, he, together with Kobe YMCA Bell-choir, has been a regular participant in the international symposia and introduced Japanese music to the handbell musicians abroad. Other chances for him to share music with international handbell ringers were National Residential Ringing Week to which he was invited as the guest conductor (1997, 2003, Dunblane). Served as the chairman for the 14th International Handbell Symposium held in Osaka, Japan (2010). Recently, ABE is keen to handbell music exchange between Taiwan and Japan. Since 2007, he has visited Taiwan 5 times with Ding Dong Ringers and performed concerts as well as inspiring ringers in Taiwan.

His first
publication of music was a collection of popular hymn arrangement, “Onward, Christian Soldiers.” More arrangement and composition are still being added. Other achievements are recordings by Kobe YMCA Bell-choir (4 CDs and 1 DVD) of which musicality is highly regarded.
He is a clinician of the handbell course at Osaka College of Music and directs many handbell teams, with the intention of educating the next generation.


  • The 16th International Handbell Symposium in Jeju, Korea

  Gave a lecture on Japanese music (Workshop title "Introducing Japanese Music") and gave a message at "Morning Prayer" on the 4th day.

  > Read the text of message at "Morning Service" (PDF)