The Heinz Chapel Choir was founded in 1938 to coincide with the dedication of the Heinz Memorial Chapel, a gift to the University of Pittsburgh from Henry John Heinz, founder of the H.J. Heinz Company. Intended as a memorial to family matriarch Anna Margaretta Heinz, who instilled in her children the value of education and religion, the Heinz Memorial Chapel is interdenominational and welcoming to all.
For 80 years, the Heinz Chapel Choir has presented a cappella music from a variety of time periods and cultural traditions and in a wealth of languages. During the first decades of its existence, the Heinz Chapel Choir’s primary responsibility was to sing the programs and services of the Chapel. While remaining an auditioned student ensemble inextricably intertwined with the Heinz Memorial Chapel, the Choir’s identity has transitioned to that of a non-liturgical concert ensemble, rooted in the a cappella idiom that defined its origins. Throughout its history, the Choir has always been a home for students at the University of Pittsburgh who study a wide range of academics but share a love for choral music, a dedication to excellence, and a passion for reaching the hearts and souls of their audience.
The Heinz Chapel Choir’s extensive history of international touring has allowed scores of student singers exposure to the art and culture of other countries, while evolving their own musical abilities through the intensive performing experience that can only be provided by such a tour. The Choir was thrilled to spend 12 days traveling and singing in England and Scotland in May 2017, learning about a choral tradition that stretches back over a millennium. The members of the Heinz Chapel Choir were particularly grateful for the opportunity to work with Stephen Layton and hear the Choir of Trinity College, Cambridge sing a service in the Trinity College Chapel.
We look forward to celebrating our 80th Anniversary during our Reunion Weekend, April 12-14, 2019, as well as “on the road” for our 80th Anniversary Tour to Chicago and SE Wisconsin in early May. We hope you’ll follow our adventures here at our website, and on our Tour Blog, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
Please consider donating to the Heinz Chapel Choir to help underwrite the students' cost for our upcoming international tour in 2020. Thank you for taking the time to think of us!