The carillon

Every Sunday between 11 a.m. and 12 noon, the city centre of Ghent rings out to the sounds of a carillon concert by the city carilloneur, Kenneth Theunissen. During the summer months, he invites various guest carillonneurs and you can enjoy a real carillon festival.

World Heritage

The carillon is the world’s heaviest musical instrument, and Ghent’s carillon is a World Heritage Site.

Ghent installed its very first carillon in 1552, with eighteen bells in the Belfry. The carillon now has 54 bells and weighs a total of over 30 tons.

A carillon can be played in two different ways. Either the carillonneur sits behind a keyboard with sticks and pedals which are connected to the clappers in the bells, or there is an automatic rotating drum which makes the carillon play. This drum is connected to hammers on the outside of the bells and plays music every fifteen minutes.

Read more about the carilloneur

Repositioning of the pins on the drum

City carillonneur Kenneth Theunissen repositions the pins on the drum every two years. This is also referred to as 'the repositioning'. First the drum is completely emptied and then new pins are re-positioned on the drum.

Read more about the rotating drum