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We are the Georgetown Chimes, Georgetown University’s oldest and all-male a cappella singing group. Since 1946, the Georgetown Chimes have entertained Presidents from Truman to Obama, cocktail parties from Maine to California, and crowds of all ages from Puerto Rico to Germany.

A Georgetown Chimes concert consists of high-quality vocal performance, entertainment, and energy sure to please audiences of all ages. From barbershop standards and The Star Spangled Banner to pop and holiday season favorites, the Chimes will entertain your guests.

For more information, visit our Contact /Bookings page.


A Brief History of Chimes Night

The following was written by John Broughan, Chime #53, who served as Ephus of the Chimes in the 1961-62 and 1963-64 school years. John, along with 1789 and Tombs founder Richard McCooey, was instrumental in the institution of Chimes performances at the Tombs (Chimes Nights) and 1789, which continue to this day.

The initial concept of a relationship with the newly opened 1789 and the Chimes was established in early January 1962 between the founder of 1789, Richard McCooey, and myself, during a meeting set up by a mutual friend, Frank Gannon. McCooey had expressed to Frank, who worked at 1789 and was a close friend to the Chimes, an interest in developing a relationship with the Chimes similar to the long-standing weekly concert the Whiffenpoofs performed at Morey’s near the Yale campus. To replicate that tradition, it was agreed that the Chimes would sing a set each Friday afternoon in the Pub portion of the ’89 restaurant. Signs were made and posted around campus inviting students and faculty to join us. From late February to mid-March, these weekly sets attracted little interest and a small audience, primarily of friends who were offered a free beer to show up.

By mid-March, all parties agreed that this initial concept was not working – perhaps the wrong time of day, wrong location – and definitely too genteel for the group; it was not the Chimes’ style. So, it was agreed that the timing and location would be changed to a Wednesday night set in the Tombs. Richard felt the large table in front of the fireplace would work and had one of his technicians rig a few speakers with a feed into the Tombs sound system, mixed with a set of overhead lights. Quite elementary, but it worked. Another set of posters announcing the new venue were posted around the campus, in hopes students (in addition to our small group of “Chime Buffs”) would show.

The weeks leading up to that first Chimes Night were quite busy and successful for us – including a sold-out concert in Gaston Hall, and a gig to sing for then President Lyndon Johnson and former President Truman at Harry’s 80th.

So, as we headed to the tombs that Wednesday night, we were feeling pretty good about ourselves, but clearly unsure how this new concept would work. To our pleasant surprise, we arrived to find an overflowing boisterous crowd awaiting us, with an even larger group waiting patiently up the stairs and down the street. Initially, we thought this huge showing we due to our popularity but then we quickly realized that Thursday was a Holy Day and there were no classes, so students were out to party.

Once seated at the table, mugs and bottles of Black Horse Ale were generously supplied to our group by the staff. Then, the room went dark, the crowd hushed and the lights came on over the table. Before we completed “We Meet,” we looked at each other and knew we were embarking on something quite special. The set ended to great cheers, and the appreciative crowd was ready for more. So that initial set lead to additional sets well into the night. It was a true party, and we were enjoying every minute of it – right up to “last call.” McCooey also enjoyed the night, calling it magical, and we immediately agreed that Chimes Night at the Tombs would continue every Wednesday night until the late May end of the semester. (GU cost less then, and the school year was longer.)

The word of that first Chimes Night spread quickly and every Wednesday night for the remainder of the spring brought out enthusiastic crowds. Even The Washington Post reported in the entertainment section that Wednesday nights in the Tombs was “the new hot spot,” bringing students from surrounding schools as well.

Before the last event in May, both McCooey and ourselves realized a special bond between the Chimes and the ’89 had been established which, hopefully, would continue in the future. So confident was McCooey that he ordered the brass plate for “The Chimes Table,” as well as the double handed Chime mugs from a pewter company in the UK.

In an era before iPhones and personal videos, there are only a few photos that recorded those long and memorable evenings. A tape recorder, however, was added to the sound system during the final concerts that provided the content for the 1964 Live at the ’89 album. Those who have listened to that album would have likely noted the vitality and genuine enthusiasm those nights brought to our group and “adoring fans!”

And as we look back over those fifty years, all Chimes owe a great debt of gratitude to Richard McCooey, a true friend and benefactor, who provided a wonderful tradition for each of us.

May that tradition continue for the next half century in that same spirit in which it began so long ago.


Fall Auditions 2014!

The Georgetown Chimes, Georgetown’s oldest a cappella group, is excited to kickstart our 69th year on the hilltop with FALL AUDITIONS Sunday, August 31st at 1 p.m. and Tuesday, September 2nd at 7 p.m.! We sing everything from barbershop and traditional choral pieces to classic rock and Top 40. In the past few years, we’ve sung throughout D.C. – at the White House, State Department, Nationals Park, and Verizon Center – and throughout the world, from London and Germany to Miami and Puerto Rico.

We welcome guys of all skill levels to audition, no prior experience required! Just bring a song to sing unaccompanied to the Chimes House (3611 Prospect Street, around the corner from Tombs) and we’ll see you there.

If you have any questions in the meantime, don’t hesitate to leave a comment, email us at thegeorgetownchimes@gmail.com, follow us on Twitter at @thegtownchimes, or visit our Facebook page. Good luck with everything, and we look forward to welcoming you to the hilltop!


Reserve your Cherry Tree tickets today!

The wait is over – the form to reserve your Cherry Tree Massacre tickets has gone live! Make your reservations here.


Cherry Tree Massacre 2014 Dates Announced!

We have our dates for CTM 2014 – the 41st Annual! Our shows will be:
Friday, January 31
Saturday, February 1
Friday, February 7
Saturday, February 15

Tickets will go on sale this January – stay tuned!


Fall Auditions 2013 are here!

Hey everyone! We’re excited to kick off our 68th year on the hilltop with fall auditions Sunday, September 1st at 1 PM and Tuesday, September 3rd at 7 PM! We welcome guys of all skill levels to audition, no prior experience required! Just bring a song to sing unaccompanied to the Chimes House (3611 Prospect Street, around the corner from Tombs) and we’ll see you there.

If you have any questions about auditions or what it’s like to be part of an all-male a cappella group at Georgetown, don’t hesitate to leave a comment or email us at thegeorgetownchimes@gmail.com. Good luck with everything, and we look forward to welcoming you onto the hilltop!


Cherry Tree 2013 Videos Now on YouTube!

 

#228 Junho Lee performing "Bridge Over Troubled Water" 

The 40th annual Cherry Tree Massacre came and went in the blink of an eye. The Chimes would like to thank everyone who came out to see the show and all the guest groups who performed. We would also like to give a special thank you to our alumni who come year after year in huge numbers. Looks like it’s time to start the countdown until CTM 2014!

On a related note, we are happy to announce that our set from the 40th annual Cherry Tree Massacre have (finally) been uploaded to our YouTube page! Relive all your favorite moments, such as the lively joy of “Little Bitty Pretty One”, the mysterious soulfulness of “Wayfaring Stranger”, and the spiritual transcendence of “Bridge Over Troubled Water.”


Cherry Tree Massacre Tickets on Sale Now

It’s that time of year again! We’re gearing up for the 40th Annual Cherry Tree Massacre. Tickets are on sale now for the four shows: Friday, February 1st, Saturday, February 2nd, Friday, February 8th, and Saturday, February 23rd. We will be selling tickets in Red Square Monday through Friday from 10am to 5pm until the shows sell out. You can also reserve tickets online through our website. Tickets are $10 if purchased at our table or $12 if reserved online or purchased at the door. If you have any questions, feel free to email us at georgetownchimestickets@gmail.com. We’re excited for this year’s show, and we hope to see you there!


Fall 2012 Chimes Night Dates Announced!

In honor of the start of the new semester, the Chimes would like to welcome everyone back to the Hilltop! We now have the dates set for this semester’s Chimes Nights at the Tombs. There will be three Chimes Nights: September 26th (Homecoming), October 31st (Halloween Chimes Night), and December 10th (Christmas). Each Chimes Night starts with dinner at 7:00 PM, followed by music at 8:00 PM. To learn more about Chimes Nights at the Tombs, click here. Reservations will be accepted online starting a week before each Chimes Night.


Fall Auditions 2012: Do You Have What it Takes to Become a Chime?


Hey everyone! The Chimes hope you’ve been having a great summer. We’re really excited about the start of the 2012-2013 school year, and one of our first events is fall auditions. There will be two days to audition: Tuesday, September 4 and Thursday, September 6. Both auditions will occur at 7:30 PM at the Chimes House (3611 Prospect St). Callbacks will be held after the auditions on the 6th. If you have any questions, email our Business Manager, Junho Lee.


2012 John Carroll Weekend and Wazoo

Last month, the Chimes spent an awesome weekend in Chicago for the 2012 John Carroll Weekend. We had a Chimes Night at the Drake Hotel and sang the Alma Mater at the awards banquet. Special thanks to the Chicago-area alumni and the parents of #222 Matthew Gorey for hosting us for the weekend!

Yesterday, we had our annual Wazoo barbecue to celebrate the end of the year and elect next year’s officers. Here are the election results:
Ephus: #226 Michael Luckey
Business Manager: #228 Junho Lee
Webmaster: #229 Matthew Demartini
Treasurer: #237 Nicholas Strzeletz (fall) and #235 Tom Lane (spring)
Congratulations to everyone!

Upcoming Events:

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  • News & Updates:

    Video from our recent performance at the 2012 DC A Cappella Festival is now on Youtube!
    Senior Chimes Night was a huge success! What a great way to send our graduates off. See you all in September for our next Chimes Night.
    Our two most recent CDs, 36th & Prospect and Battle Gear, are now on sale in the Georgetown University Bookstore!  Next time you're on campus, stop in the Leavey Center and take a look.
    Here's a brief explanation of Cherry Tree Massacre, the Chimes' annual concert series. Check out photos from CTM 2012 on our Multimedia page!
    Check out The Georgetown Chimes YouTube Channel to see videos of recent performances!

    Copyright © 2010 The Georgetown Chimes