Handel Choir

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Handel Choir Auditions


Handel Choir Singers

Handel Choir held community member auditions for the 2017-2018 concert season August 25 and 26, 2017.

Thanks to all who gave us your time and your courage to audition!  

The next round of auditions has not yet been scheduled, nor do we have auditions scheduled for pro choristers or soloists. Please check back on this page for updated information.

Auditions take place at:

Church of the Holy Comforter, 130 West Seminary Avenue, Lutherville-Timonium, Maryland 21093

Please note: There are two Holy Comforters in the area, so be sure to navigate to the correct address.

Keep scrolling for info about what to expect and what to prepare.

Led by Interim Artistic Director and Conductor Brian Bartoldus in the 2017-2018 season, critically acclaimed Handel Choir of Baltimore brings together excellent singers and players from across the mid-Atlantic to perform repertoire ranging from early music to newly commissioned works. The ensemble performs three subscription concerts per season (September through May), including Handel's Messiah which the Choir has performed every year since 1935.

Handel Choir promotes the artistic health and growth of the community through its collaborative work with other organizations, recently including performances with Children’s Chorus of Maryland, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Camerata of University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore Baroque Band, Harmonious Blacksmith, Baltimore Chamber Orchestra and Peabody Early Music.

What should I prepare for an audition?

You should prepare a song or aria that effectively demonstrates your vocal and musical ability—a folk song, hymn, patriotic song or aria are all fine. You will most likely perform no more than 16-20 measures. Interim Artistic Director and Conductor Brian Bartoldus will accompany you. We advise you not to pick music that tests the limits of your range or vocal technique; rather, bring a work that you can sing confidently and expressively. You should also be prepared to sing a series of exercises to determine the range and color of your voice, and to sight-sing. Those auditioning for a soloist role should prepare at least two works of contrasting styles.

What should I expect in an audition?
Handel Choir singers

Singers audition individually with the artistic director, who will also accompany you. You will be asked to sing vocal exercises as demonstrated, to further assess voice category and color, and you will sight-read a relatively simple melody and rhythm to demonstrate musicianship skills. Prior instrumental and/or vocal solo or ensemble experience is strongly recommended. Your audition will last approximately eight minutes. 

Where does the Choir rehearse?

Handel Choir rehearses at Towson Unitarian Universalist Church, 1710 Dulaney Valley Road, Lutherville-Timonium, Maryland 21093.

What is the rehearsal schedule?

Rehearsals for the new season begin the day after Labor Day, Tuesday September 5. After that rehearsal, Handel Choir rehearses Monday nights from 7:30 to 10:00 p.m., with four Tuesday night sectional rehearsals per season, and mandatory working and dress rehearsals during the two weeks prior to a subscription concert. In addition to our subscription concert performances, there are several performances in the community.

Choir members are expected to sing in all scheduled appearances. In each of the subscription concert periods (September-December for Messiah and January through early May) a maximum of two absences is permitted. Singers are expected to work on their music individually in between rehearsals, preparing assigned passages and reviewing music that proved challenging during prior rehearsals.

When do rehearsals begin?

Rehearsals for the new season begin the day after Labor Day, Tuesday September 5. After Messiah performances in December, rehearsals typically resume on the first Monday or Tuesday of the new year. 

Who sings in Handel Choir?

Our singers have a wide range of musical backgrounds; several are professional musicians. Singers range in age from early 20s to early 60s, and we come from the Baltimore/DC/Pennsylvania and Western Maryland regions. Handel Choir is a friendly group, and we get to know each other as friends as well as musicians.

Dues and music?

Annual membership dues of $170 are collected at the start of the season. Vocal scores for the season are available to members to purchase at cost. Members are welcome to use scores from their own collection provided the editions are the same. Black music folders are required for concerts. A limited number of folders are available for purchase. Financial aid is available to ensure that all qualified singers are able to participate.

What does Handel Choir wear?

Members are responsible for providing their own concert attire. Men wear a black dinner jacket (tuxedo) with white shirt, black bow tie, black pants, black socks and black dress shoes. Women wear a long sleeved black top, floor length black skirt (hem 1/2 to 1 inch from floor) or dressy, loose fitting, floor length black pants, black hosiery and black dress shoes.

Additional responsibilities:Handel Choir singing

Members support Handel Choir through participation on committees and by working on special projects. Each member supports Handel Choir by publicizing concerts and events to their friends, family and associates, and to their own communities, and by purchasing or selling tickets to subscription concerts. 


SUSTAINING SUPPORT for Handel Choir's 2017-2018 subscription concert series is provided by Preston and Nancy Athey.GuideStar logo

Handel Choir's 2017-2018 season is SUPPORTED by the Maryland State Arts Council, William G. Baker, Jr. Memorial Fund, creator of the Baker Artist Awards, and by the Citizens of Baltimore County, Harford County Cultural Arts Board, the City of Baltimore and Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts, and the Venable Foundation.

Maryland State Arts Council celebrates 50 years Baker Fund Baltimore County Commission on Arts and Sciences Harford County Cultural Arts Board Creative Baltimore Fund Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts Venable Foundation


Handel Choir of Baltimore is a MEMBER of Greater Baltimore Cultural Alliance.

Greater Baltimore Cultural Alliance