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Swarthmore College Chorus & Garnet Singers

Chorus and the Garnet Singers provide singers on the Swarthmore campus the opportunity to join a welcoming creative community that rehearses and performs works from across hundreds of years and many musical traditions. Both ensembles are directed by Dr. Nathan Reiff and perform regularly in Lang Concert Hall.

Chorus is a mixed-voice choir comprising about 75 students, faculty, staff, and community members. This ensemble rehearses on Wednesdays from 7:00-9:00 PM, with each vocal section meeting approximately one additional Thursday per month for a sectional rehearsal from 8:00-9:00 PM. Chorus performs repertoire including small-scale works from throughout history and around the globe as well as major works with orchestra including Fauré’s Requiem, Boulanger’s Hymne au Soleil, and Bach’s Magnificat (BWV 243). Singers of all experience levels are encouraged to join.

The Garnet Singers is a select, mixed-voice ensemble of approximately 24 students. Garnet Singers rehearses Mondays from 4:15-6:15 PM and Wednesdays from 9:00-10:00 p.m. Garnet Singers are strongly encouraged to enroll simultaneously in Chorus. This ensemble focuses on works that are more intimate than those sung by Chorus, typically either a cappella or with piano accompaniment, and spanning many centuries, languages, and musical styles. It also regularly premieres pieces by student and faculty composers. Upcoming repertoire includes works by Adolphus Hailstork, Amy Beach, Sherryl Sewepagaham, Heinrich Schütz, and others.

Both Chorus and Garnet Singers provide numerous opportunities for members interested in being section leaders, rehearsal managers, social coordinators, conductors, composers, and arrangers. Both choirs can be taken for 0.5 or 0.0 credits.

Choral auditions at Swarthmore are a low-pressure and affirming experience! Both Chorus and Garnet Singers offer auditions at the beginning of each semester. During your brief audition you will be asked to do some vocal exercises, a listening exercise, and to sing about 30 seconds of a song of your choosing in any style, a cappella (“Happy Birthday” is fine!). The goal is for you to feel empowered to share about your musical experience and goals in a welcoming space.

Information about auditions for Fall 2024 will be posted here in August. Please reach out to Nathan Reiff (nreiff1@swarthmore.edu) at any time with any questions.

Program information and texts/translations for the April 26, 2024 performance are available here, and program notes are available here.

 

Groups of singers on stage
Swarthmore Chorus on stage at the 2023 winter concert with director Nathan Reiff.
Chorus member singing on stage
group of students singing on stage
Group of students singing on stage
Swarthmore student conducting on stage
Swarthmore student singing on stage
group of students singing on stage
Garnet singers on stage Photo by Bob Williams
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Garnet Singers sing "Shenandoah"

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Garnet Singers sing Palestrina

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Swarthmore College Chorus sings Brahms (I)

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Swarthmore College Chorus sings Vivaldi

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