The Hart House Singers is a non-auditioned choir at the University of Toronto that provides an opportunity for first-time and experienced singers to share in the joy of choral singing, to learn the art of song, to have fun, and to sing culturally and historically diverse repertoire.

Hart House Singers

ABOUT US

The Hart House Singers is a non-auditioned choir at the University of Toronto that provides an opportunity for first-time and experienced singers to share in the joy of choral singing, to learn the art of song, and to sing historically and culturally diverse repertoire. Typically, the choir performs music from around the world in its summer or fall terms, and one of the great choral works in the winter term. The Hart House Singers has performed at Toronto’s “Nuit blanche,” and in Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 and Holst’s The Planets with the Hart House Orchestra. In the past few seasons, we have performed such famous choral works as Bruckner’s Mass in E minor, Dvorak’s Mass in D and Stabat Mater, Mozart’s Requiem, Haydn’s Mass in Time of War, and Beethoven's Mass in C with orchestras made of students and recent graduates from the Faculty of Music and the Royal Conservatory of Music, and local professionals.


CONDUCTOR

DAVID ARNOT-JOHNSTON has directed many vocal and instrumental groups, including at Canada's National Ballet School and Tafelmusik's Baroque Summer Institute at the University of Toronto. He completed the graduate program in early music at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague, The Netherlands, and holds a Masters degree in music history and performance from the University of Toronto.

As a tenor soloist, David has performed with several early and contemporary ensembles, including Tafelmusik, the Studio de musique ancienne de Montréal, Opera Atelier, Dancemakers, Utrecht Barok Consort, La Capriola of Amsterdam, Utrecht Bach Society, Ottawa Choral Society, and The Toronto Consort. He has sung as a soloist under Sigiswald Kuijken, Andrew Parrott, William Christie, and with Emma Kirkby in works by Mozart, Handel, Bach, Lully, and Monteverdi.

David has recorded as a soloist and ensemble performer on the Naxos, CBC, Marquis, RCA/BMG, and Analekta labels with the Aradia Ensemble, Tafelmusik Orchestra, Toronto Consort, Canadian Brass, and the Theatre of Early Music. A dedicated instructor of music, David directed the music education program at the National Ballet School for ten years. He has been conductor of the Hart House Singers since 2003.


PIANO ACCOMPANIST

CONRAD GOLD, holds a Bachelor of Music from Oberlin College Conservatory of Music, and a Master of Music from McGill University. He undertook additional keyboard performance studies in Italy. Mr. Gold also serves as the accompanist for the Brampton Festival Singers, and has collaborated with the Tallis Choir and the Cantabile Chamber Singers of Toronto, and the Laudate Dominum Choir of Chatham. Currently living in Toronto, Mr. Gold plays organ regularly at Lorne Park Baptist Church in Mississauga, St. Michael's Cathedral in Toronto, and several other Toronto area churches. His other musical activities include playing organ recitals and teaching piano.

CONCERTS

Join us for open rehearsals on Monday, January 9 and 16, 7:45-9:30 pm

REPERTOIRE

Singers 2022-2023

On November 20, we performed an afternoon concert with HMCS York Band. It was a resounding success, with the Great Hall filled to capacity! We are now preparing for our winter term concert on Saturday, March 25 from 7:30 to 9:00 pm. We will sing Beethoven's glorious Symphony 9 with a full orchestra. Here is the planned repertoire:

  • Beethoven: Symphony 9 (choral movement), with orchestra
  • Beethoven: "Gloria" from his Mass in C, with orchestra
  • Possibly other movements from Beethoven's Mass in C

Past Concerts

  • Sing Me At Dawn (November 2022), joint performance with HMCS York Band
  • Burst into Song (April 2022), joint performance with Hart House Chorus
  • Modern Choral Classics (March 2020) Canceled
  • Verdi's Requiem (November 2019)
  • Journeys (July 2019)
  • Zadok the Priest and others (March 2019)
  • Through the Eyes of a Child (November 2018)
  • Love Life! R&B and Music Theatre songs on Life (July 2018)
  • Music for Choir and Brass: A Concert! (March 2018)
  • This Land: In Music and Song (November 2017)
  • Oh, Freedom!: Spirtuals and Classical works. (July 2017)
  • Beethoven: Mass in C (March 2017)
  • Darkness and Light (November 2016)
  • The Greatest Duets in the World (July 2016)
  • Bruckner: Mass in e minor (March 2016)
  • L'Extase (November 2015)
  • Let the Games Begin (July 2015)
  • Beethoven and Haydn, including Haydn's Mass in Time of War (March 2015)
  • Songs of Passion, Songs of Grace (November 2014)
  • Joyful Choral Works by J.S. Bach (July 2014)
  • Mozart: Requiem (March 2014)
  • Pax: Songs on Peace (December 2013)
  • The REAL Glee (July 2013)
  • Dvorák: Mass in D (March 2013)

Performance Samples

    "Sing Me At Dawn" arr. David Arnot-Johnston
    "Dies irae" from Mozart Requiem
    "Célébrons" trad. French

JOIN US

Update for Hart House Singers, as of December 22nd, 2022:
Hello Hart House Singers and those who may like to join us for the 2023 winter term!

Our first rehearsal in the winter term of 2023 will be on Monday, January 9, 7:45-9:30 pm, in the beautiful Great Hall of Hart House.

Here is more information:

  1. No Audition! We are a non-auditioned choir. Our membership includes those who sight-read well, and those who do not read music well. Some of our members have had a lot of experience singing in choirs, while many are just starting to sing in a choir or haven't sung in one for several years. Membership to the Hart House Singers is open to everyone; you can be a student at UofT, a student from another university, or a non-student. You may join for only one term, or both terms. We may have a summer term, which of course is optional.
  2. Registration consists of three steps.
    1. Arrive early before the first two rehearsals (Monday, January 9 and 16, 7:45-9:30 p.m.) in the Great Hall at Hart House, and register in person. You will need to give your name, voice part (soprano, alto, tenor, bass, don't know) and your student number if you have one. Please use your student or staff utoronto.ca email address if you have one. (For those of you who are not students, use any email address you like.)
    2. Please email us at hhsingers@gmail.com, providing your full name, your voice part if you know it (soprano, alto, tenor, bass), and your UofT student number if you have one. If you have a UofT email address, please use it when registering. This helps us keep our own records straight.
    3. Please also register on the Hart House site at https://harthouse.ca/clubs/singers and click on the red "Sign-up for Membership" button on the right of the screen.
    If you have any trouble registering online, please inform us either at the rehearsals or by sending us an email at hhsingers@gmail.com
  3. Open Rehearsals: The first two rehearsals each term are "open rehearsals" - you can come to either or both rehearsals, read and sing the music, see if you like the choir, and confirm later if you'd like to join. Music will be provided at the rehearsal. The open rehearsals this term are Monday, January 9 and Monday, January 16, from 7:45-9:30 pm in the Great Hall at Hart House.
  4. Rehearsals: Rehearsals are on Monday evenings (except statutory holidays such as Family Day), 7:45 - 9:30 pm, at Hart House, usually in the Great Hall. Rehearsals are usually in the beautiful Great Hall of Hart House. After the concert on March 25, there are no more rehearsals for the term. (This is to allow students time to complete the final winter term assignments and prepare for exams.)
  5. In-person rehearsals only: We will not be providing a hybrid model of rehearsals this term. That is, we will not stream the rehearsals live for members to follow at home. There have been several reasons for this, one of which is the high cost of doing this operation. We will hold rehearsals in-person only. We realize some are still concerned about safety as levels of viral illness (including COVID-19) in Toronto remain high. We will encourage the use of masks, and we will rehearse spread-out, facing the long west wall, with space between singers. At the time of posting this notice, UofT will not be checking for vaccination status before entering any building on campus, including Hart House. (One exception: Students living in residences may be directed to prove their vaccination status.)
  6. Dress Rehearsal and Performance: The dress rehearsal for this term is Friday, March 24, 7:00-9:30 pm. The performance is Saturday, March 25, 7:30-9:00 pm. with a rehearsal/warmup at 6:00-7:00 pm.
  7. Music to rehearse at home: All members will receive hard copies of the music, which they may take home. Most of the music will also be provided in an online format for those who wish to practise at home between rehearsals. We use an excellent streamed software called “MatchMySound,” which enables you to hear only your voice part or all voice parts together, while showing the notes on the computer screen. You may change the speed of the music as you require. This service is optional; many members find it very helpful, while others find they don't need to use it. It's your choice! The cost of the service is covered by our budget. Members do not pay separately for it.
  8. Repertoire: Here is some of the repertoire for the winter term:
    • Beethoven: Symphony 9 (choral movement), with orchestra
    • Beethoven: "Gloria" from his Mass in C, with orchestra
    • Possibly other movements from Beethoven's Mass in C
  9. Fees: The fee structure has changed from that which was posted before the pandemic. (In most cases, fees are lower or even free, whereas everyone had to pay a fee before the pandemic.) Our new fee schedule is as follows:
    • a. for current UofT students or those who are members of Hart House (i.e.: UofT students or those who have bought an athletic membership to Hart House): free (Please note: Though it is free, you still must register to be a member.)
    • b. For non-students (who are also not members of Hart House): $120 per term or $225 for the year. [This works out to just over $10/rehearsal.]
    • c. For non-students (who are also not members of Hart House) who are 29 and under and 65 and over: $90 per term or $165 per year. [This works out to around $8/rehearsal]
  10. Fundraising: In order to have an orchestra for our March 2023 concert, we need to fundraise! Please consider giving any amount you can afford by going to this site: https://engage.utoronto.ca/site/SPageServer?pagename=donate#/fund/536. Even $10 or $20 is very helpful. Larger donations are also welcome!
  11. Questions? Please email us at hhsingers@gmail.com

FEES!

You may pay fees either at the Hart House Hub (front desk) or on-line on the Hart House website at https://harthouse.ca/clubs/singers and follow the link for Hart House Club - Singers. The first two rehearsals of the term are open and no payment of fee is required to attend. If you have problems with the recreation site contact Hart House Hub.

Anyone who wishes to join the Hart House Singers now has both an ANNUAL and a TERM payment option. The annual option represents the least overall cost. The term options allow participants to have flexibility and to manage their registration costs differently if they wish. If you have paid a registration fee for either the fall (2022) or winter (2023) term, you are already covered for Summer fees and do not need to pay a fee for the Summer (2023) term.

The fee structure for the Hart House Singers is as follows:

Student/Member* Non-Member Under 29 & Over 65
ANNUAL REGISTRATION FEE Free $245 $165
TERM REGISTRATION FEE Free $120 $90

*“Student” means any student who has paid ancillary fees as part of their academic program; "member” refers to those who also have a full Hart House fitness centre membership.


2022-2023 Summary

Term Details Fall Sept-Nov 2022 Winter Jan-Mar 2023 Summer May-July 2023
First Rehearsal Date Monday Sept. 14, 7:45 pm Monday, Jan. 9, 7:45 pm TBA
Concert Sunday, Nov. 20, 4:30pm Saturday, March 25, 7:30 pm TBA
Membership Fee* Normal fees, see above. Normal fees, see above. TBA
Proof of payment of Singers club fee (must be ready by next rehearsal) Everyone Everyone Everyone
REGISTRATION BY EMAIL
(waiting list only)
Opens Sept. 12 Opens Jan. 9 TBA
REPERTOIRE See Repertoire section. See Repertoire section. TBA
REHEARSALS Mondays, 7:45-9:30 PM Mondays, 7:45-9:30 PM TBA

OTHER IMPORTANT THINGS TO KNOW:

*Cash, debit or credit card are all acceptable forms of payment.
**To join the Singers, you must provide proof that you have paid the club fee for the term or covering year. Even if you were a member of the Singers last term, you are still required to register for this term! Registration will be granted on a first come, first served basis.
Note: If you are a soprano or alto, come especially early! Spots in the choir for these voices tend to fill up quickly. There is no audition. Singers of all levels are welcome to join!

MUSIC DEPOSITS

We no longer collect music deposits.

FUNDRAISING

In order to have an orchestra for our March 2023 concert, we need to fundraise! Please consider giving any amount you can afford by going to this site: https://engage.utoronto.ca/site/SPageServer?pagename=donate#/fund/536.
Even $10 or $20 is very helpful. Larger donations are also welcome!