On November 11, 2019, Hart House marked its 100th anniversary as a student-focused centre for the arts, dialogue and wellness at the University of Toronto. More than just a physical space, Hart House plays a pivotal role as a diverse and inclusive gathering place that fosters the enhancement of the student experience on all three campuses and provides a haven for students and community members to come together despite their differences.
The President's Message
On behalf of the University of Toronto, it is my privilege to offer congratulations to the Hart House community as it celebrates its 100th Anniversary.
In making a gift to the University of Toronto, Vincent Massey established Hart House as a gathering place for students to pursue co-curricular activities. With Hart House, Mr. Massey hoped to capture the enriching social and recreational life he experienced at Oxford’s colleges. As he noted at the time, the bricks and mortar are but the bones, the community must provide the spirit.
Since its opening on Remembrance Day, 1919, Hart House has remained a welcoming centre where students—as well as faculty, staff, alumni and members of the broader community—come together, across their differences, in common pursuit of “high endeavour.” Through creative engagement with the arts and culture, debates and dialogue, recreation and wellness, or community-engaged learning, Hart House provides students an opportunity to navigate different ideas and perspectives, and to connect to causes and purposes greater than themselves.
Indeed, Hart House has become an integral part of the cultural and intellectual landscape of the University and the surrounding city, and is peerless in inspiring change, provoking thought and helping to shape the artistic and social tapestry of the local community.
To mark this wonderful milestone, the Warden’s office at Hart House has organized a remarkable series of initiatives and events throughout 2019 and into spring 2020. Whether you are an old friend of Hart House or a new acquaintance, I would encourage you to discover all it has to offer.
In closing, I thank all the organizers, volunteers, and the 100th Anniversary Advisory Committee for their hard work and dedication in bringing this programming to fruition and offer best wishes for an outstanding year of celebration.
Meric S. Gertler
The Warden's Message
Since it was opened by then-Governor General the Duke of Devonshire in 1919, Hart House has brought together students from different colleges, faculties, and disciplines to form connections with one another not because of their similar academic pursuits, but because of their shared interest in discovering new facets of their common humanity outside of the classroom.
Today, as Hart House prepares for a year-long line up of activities for its 100th anniversary, the enthusiasm and excitement of students for this unique approach to student engagement are still as robust as ever. Apparently time really does fly when you’re having fun.
Whether by engaging in vigorous debate about the issues of the day, organizing and attending gala celebrations, enjoying competitive and recreational athletics, performing at the Hart House Theatre, contributing to House governance, expanding the Hart House Art Collection, making or listening to beautiful instrumental or choral music, advocating for favoured causes, protesting against perceived injustices, unwinding at the Hart House Farm, participating in international cultural exchanges, or enjoying virtually any other recreational, athletic, or cultural activity that one could ever imagine enjoying, generations of students at Hart House have learned about themselves, one another, and the world around them by engaging in exploration, discovery, and sheer, unadulterated fun–together.
Unfortunately, for many years, the House did not welcome everyone. Hart House did not admit female students as full members until 1972. It took much too long for that change to come, and women had to fight too hard for much too long to achieve something that should never have been an issue.
But we have learned from our past.
Today, as we embark on our 100th Anniversary, Hart House is fully committed to ensuring that every student of this university–regardless of identity, background, or ability–feels welcome at Hart House, and sees themselves, their stories and their priorities reflected in what we do. If we do that, I am excited by the potential for the 100th Anniversary year to create unforgettable new memories for everyone who has ever engaged with the magic that is Hart House, as well as for those many who will be encountering Hart House for the first time.
Throughout the year, however, we choose to engage with Hart House, may we all take sheer delight in the joy of discovering new things about ourselves, each other, and the world we all share. And may time fly while we do it.
Happy 100th Anniversary to all.
- Andrew Szende
- Barbara Dick
- Brenda Ichikawa
- Bryn MacPherson
- Bukama Mugisha-Muntu
- Chemi Lhamo
- Cheryl Gibbs
- David Kim
- Edward Thompson
- Elizabeth Smyth
- Hannah de Haan
- James Courtney
- Jenny Blackbird
- John Monahan
- Jonathan Hamiton-Diabo
- Joshua Grondin
- Joy Fitzgibbon
- Kimberley Tull
- Linda MacRae
- Sherry Yuan Hunter
- Susan Blight
- Terese Mason Pierre
- Venus Wang
- Kelly Schnurr, Senior Project Manager
- Sophie Wolpert, Project Coordinator
- Jessica Myshrall, Project Coordinator
- Serena Marzario, Assistant Project Coordinator
Media & Press
General 100th Anniversary
- Hart House Turns 100: U of T’s beloved student centre once had a flying trapeze. A century later, that spirit lives on, UofT Magazine, April 24, 2019
Hart House Centennial Art Commission
- News Roundup: A New Director for Toronto’s Big Art Fair, and More, CanadianArt, May 16, 2019
- Rebecca Belmore and Osvaldo Yero are the Recipients of the 2019 Hart House Centennial Commission at the University of Toronto, Muskrat Magazine, May 16, 2019
Hart House 100th Anniversary Concert Series
- Hart House Celebrates 100 Years, May 15, 2019
- Rebecca Belmore and Osvaldo Yero are the recipients of the 2019 Hart House Centennial Commission at the University of Toronto, May 15, 2019
For general enquiries about Hart House or its 100th Anniversary, please contact the Main Information Desk at 416.978.2452