UMD Sings!

University of Minnesota Duluth

University Singers, Chamber Singers, Concert Chorale, Vocal Jazz, Opera

Join a great choir at UMD

Students of any major can join a choir or enroll in voice lessons!

Students who enroll in a choir receive Fine Arts credit towards fulfillment of the Liberal Education requirement.

If you sang in your high school or community choir, consider continuing at UMD!

We have a great singing community and want you to be a part of it.

Whether you like traditional or popular styles, whether you are a veteran singer or new to choir - there is a vocal experience at UMD that you will enjoy.

If you are interested in any choir, please go ahead and register for your preferred ensemble!

Click on the options below for specific requirements for each choir.

University Singers

About University Singers

Directed by Dr. Richard Robbins, University Singers is UMD's auditioned large choir. This award-winning choir performs several concerts a year, and have performed for regional conferences of the American Choral Directors Association and the Minnesota Music Educators Association. Recent honors include an ACDA performance and finalist for the American Prize in both the Collegiate Choral Performance and American Music Performance divisions. This choir often tours and collaborates with guest artists and with symphony orchestras.


Students must audition to participate in University Singers. Students of any major may join this choir. You may register before you complete your audition.

To audition for University Singers:

  1. Register for University Singers (MU1511 1 credit; rehearses M-W 3:20-4:30, T-Th 3:00-4:10)

  2. Complete the audition information form (found here).

  3. Sign up for an interview time

At the audition, students are asked to sing a short excerpt of a solo song with piano accompaniment, a hymn/spiritual, or "My Country 'Tis of Thee" (1 minute maximum). A piece sung for voice lessons or solo/all-state auditions is a good option. You will need to bring a copy of the piano part to your audition. If you don't have a song, some free options are found here.

At your interview, you may be asked about your musical experience, or to sight-read a short piece of music.

A two-semester commitment is expected upon accepting membership in University Singers, unless you are graduating or student teaching. If you have a schedule conflict, please let Dr. Robbins know at your audition.

NOTE: Students who are not accepted into University Singers will be asked to change their registration to Concert Chorale

Questions: contact Dr. Robbins at

Concert Chorale

Concert Chorale is a large, non-auditioned choir dedicated to the rehearsal and performance of music of different styles from a variety of cultures and historical periods. No audition required! To participate, simply register for MU 1510 and attend rehearsals, which take place from 4:30-6pm on Mondays and Wednesdays. The singers of CC come from most every academic major and year in school, first years through seniors.

Concert Chorale typically performs twice each semester in the Weber Music Hall, including in the popular December Sounds of the Season and often in the choral masterworks concert presented with the University Singers and UMD Symphony Orchestra.

To participate, register for MU 1510 or email director Dr. Ryan Deignan at with questions.

Chamber Singers

Chamber Singers (MU1512, 1 credit, rehearses M W 2:00-3:15) performs unaccompanied historical and contemporary music for smaller ensembles.

Members of Chamber Singers are selected from University Singers, most often music majors or minors.

The director of Chamber Singers is Dr. Richard Robbins.

Questions: contact Dr. Robbins (

Vocal Jazz

Membership in the UMD vocal jazz ensembles is open to all UMD students regardless of major or year in school. All are welcome!

If you enjoy singing: 1) jazz, latin, funk, rock, pop and other contemporary genres, 2) challenging harmonies, and 3) on mics in small groups, then consider joining. If you have never sung jazz, no worries - we do all kinds of popular genres. I am looking for potential, not perfection!

-Dr. Deignan

Registration Info

There are two UMD Vocal Jazz Ensembles, Lake Effect and Chill Factor.

Each ensemble constitutes a class section of a 1-credit academic course called MU 1513 Vocal Jazz.

MU 1513-001 meets Mon/Wed/Fri 12-12:50 pm

MU 1513-002 meets Tuesday and Thursday 5:00-6:30 pm

Each semester, Lake Effect and Chill Factor may rehearse at either time depending on the academic availability of students.

How to Join:

  1. Register for either Lake Effect or Chill Factor (see above)

  2. Complete the information form found HERE

  3. Email Dr. Deignan to set up an audition time.

During the meeting, I will ask about your musical background and you will complete two prepared singing tasks: two scales and a short solo in a popular style. For information about how to prepare the scales and solo, click HERE.

Students who are accepted in August are invited to participate for the full year. Spring auditions occur in December and January.

Questions? Contact Dr. Deignan at

Opera Studio

Fall 2021: seeking singers for the chorus of Die Fledermaus, a hilarious Viennese opera! Contact Dr. Robbins for details.

The University of Minnesota Duluth Opera Studio serves both the graduate and undergraduate vocal studies majors and other qualified singers. The Opera Studio presents two major performances a year – an opera scenes program and a full-length opera. Scenes and operas are chosen to fit the students' abilities with an emphasis on developing stage and acting skills.

Past productions have included standard classical and more adventurous contemporary repertoire including operas such as Die Fledermaus, Street Scene, and The Magic Flute.

If you are interested in opera, contact Alice Pierce.

Voice Lessons

Did you know: students of any major can sign-up for non-major voice lessons!

Contact Rachel Inselman for more information:


Dr. Richard Robbins - director of choral activities, University Singers, Chamber Singers


About Dr. Robbins

Dr. Ryan Deignan - Concert Chorale and Vocal Jazz


About Dr. Deignan

Prof. Rachel Inselman - head of voice area


About Prof. Inselman

Prof. Alice Pierce - opera


About Prof. Pierce

COVID-19 Updates

Accommodations for 2021-22 will be announced based on communication with the university. Currently, classes at UMD are to be held in person for 2021-22. All choirs were able to perform safely last year.

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