Hart House Theatre engages a broad array of communities in the passion, vibrancy and immediacy of theatrical performance as artists, learners, volunteers and audience members.
Through authentic artistic partnerships that enhance inclusion, pluralism and representation, Hart House Theatre focuses on the development, training and showcase of youth and emerging artists seeking to create innovative opportunities for expression and exploration. It also facilitates audience engagement with shows and programs that inspire thought, laughter and joyous applause.
Hart House Theatre supports educational opportunities and workshops, provides volunteer roles on and off stage, facilitates student theatre opportunities and delivers annual semi-professional theatre productions in artistic partnership with others seeking to reflect diverse stories and communities.
Hart House Theatre is often referred to as the cradle of Canadian Theatre. Opening in November of 1919 the Art Deco theatre on the University of Toronto campus quickly became a leader in the Canadian “Little Theatre” movement of the 1920s and 1930s.
Hart House Theatre cultivated and featured some of the country’s finest actors, directors, playwrights and designers of the pre-World War II era, including Raymond Massey, Dora Mavor Moore, Lloyd Bochner, Lawren Harris, Arthur Lismer, Wayne and Shuster and Merrill Denison.
After the war, Hart House Theatre, under the direction of Robert Gill, became an extracurricular student theatre and for twenty years turned out a new generation of stage professionals. William Hutt, Don Harron, Kate Reid, David Gardner, Arthur Hiller, Donald Sutherland, Norman Jewison and Lorne Michaels all got their start treading the boards on the Hart House stage.
By the mid-1960s the theatre joined the world of academia with the creation of the Graduate Centre for Study of Drama. A new generation of students combined dramatic literature with practical theatre experience and learned from and contributed to the vibrant Toronto theatre scene of the 1970s.
Today Hart House Theatre is the focal point for the performing arts at the University of Toronto. With over a thousand students participating each year in its extracurricular season of drama, dance, music and film, Hart House Theatre continues to influence each new generation of performers, designers and audiences.
Support Hart House Theatre
Inspiration, debate, creative expression, emotional discovery and self-knowledge–these are some of the outcomes of engagement with the performing arts, whether it is from the stage or from a seat in the theatre.
For more than 90 years, Hart House Theatre has been a creative outlet for a diverse community of students. It provides young people with transformative encounters with the performing arts and has played a vital role in building audiences and talent for theatre in Canada.
Your support is vital in helping Hart House Theatre strengthen its youth-oriented artistic programs and opportunities, increase community involvement and refurbish its historical facilities. Most importantly, by donating to Hart House Theatre you will ensure that students at the University and young people from across the city are offered valuable experiences only the performing arts can provide.
We welcome you to make an online gift to Hart House Theatre. On the page, please select Hart House Theatre from the options provided.
For further information on making a gift to Hart House Theatre, please contact
Looking for a great way to reach the U of T student population? As U of T’s Performing Arts Leader, Hart House Theatre provides an excellent way to promote your business, service or event through our playbill programs.
Benefits of advertising with us include:
- Access to our primary audience of educated U of T students
- Clean presentation due to limited and targeted use of advertising space
- Programs are repeatedly referred to which gives advertisers multiple exposures
- Association with a high-quality, well-respected theatre company
Black and white advertisements are show specific and run in the playbill section of a designated show (number of units vary depending on the show). We also offer multiple insertion discounts for those interested in advertising in the black and white playbill of several productions.
We look forward to hearing from you to book your advertising space.