Nicholas A. Hanson

After receiving his BA in Music (with concentration in handbell performance) from Concordia University, Irvine, California, Nick began teaching at The Potomac School in McLean, Virginia, in 2006. At Potomac he teaches private handbell lessons and handbell classes to 4th–12th grade students in six handbell ensembles. He has also been the handbell director at Bush Hill Presbyterian Church in Alexandria, Virginia, for over 15 years.

Nick is a sought-after faculty, clinician, and conductor for workshops and events throughout the world, having served in this role nationally in over 20 states (as well as Washington, DC) and internationally in England, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Singapore (and in Japan this summer!). He was the first-ever associate conductor for the elite handbell event, Distinctly Bronze, where he shared the podium with esteemed conductor and composer William Payn in 2015; was co-conductor for the Handbell Musicians of America (HMA) All-Star Choir in 2018; and has twice lead HMA's Distinctly Teen ensemble in 2015 and 2023.

In 2022 The Potomac School recognized Nick with the Bill Cook Excellence in Teaching Award and he was featured in the Arlington Magazine article "Teachers We Love" in 2023. He is a published writer in the national handbell magazine Overtones, has composed and arranged over 100 pieces of handbell music, and is co-host of the podcast Two Tacos High: A Handbell Podcast.

From the Potomac School Website:

"After picking up my first handbell at the age of 9, I knew it was the beginning of something truly unique. The next 20 years did not prove me wrong as I performed and taught this amazing instrument in over half the United States as well as ten other countries across Europe and Asia. Strong friendships have been created throughout the world from these travels, just from the shared appreciation and commitment to the growth of this art. Handbells have been a part of Potomac for over 40 years, and I am truly privileged to be a part of this history, sharing and teaching this unique musical experience to others."

US States and Territories: Cities/Countries Around the World:

Alabama     Hong Kong, China

Arizona     Sheffield, England

California     Singapore

Connecticut     Tainan, Taiwan








New Mexico

New York

North Carolina




South Carolina



Washington, DC


Gold markers are locations where I have taught, lead, or conducted events and festivals. Blue markers are for future events!