Hannah Barstow (b. 1994) is a pianist, vocalist and composer in the Toronto jazz scene. As a performer, she is firmly rooted in the tradition of jazz, and is strongly influenced by the music of Shirley Horn, Ahmad Jamal and Blossom Dearie. As a composer, her motivic melodies, intricate harmonies and intimate lyrics are reminiscent of Jobim compositions, among other jazz standards, but with a modern perspective. Hannah’s unique technique of intertwining the piano and her voice, both in the performance of melodies and in improvisation, is a fresh sound that adds depth to her music.
Originally from Napanee, Ontario, Hannah studied classical piano and theory from the age of four. She began performing professionally at the age of twelve as a solo jazz pianist and vocalist, and subsequently in jazz and rock groups. She received an ARCT in piano performance from the Royal Conservatory of Music (2012), a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Performance (2016) and Master of Music in Jazz Performance (2020) on piano from the University of Toronto.
Hannah has performed with a number of renowned jazz artists, including Emilie Claire Barlow, Mike Murley, Kris Davis, Jim Vivian, Steve Wallace, Pat Collins, the Brian Barlow Big Band, and the Greg Runions Big Band with the Kingston Symphony. In 2016, she was featured as the Rising Young Star at the Prince Edward County Jazz Festival, and in 2018, she toured Chile with saxophonist Mike Murley. Hannah's original song “Where Will I Be?” was recorded and released by Emilie Claire Barlow on her album Spark Bird (2023).
Hannah is an instructor at the University of Toronto Jazz Studies Program and Humber Community Music School. She has released three EPs: her debut, Hannah Barstow Trio (2017), followed by Christmas for Two with vocalist Kalya Ramu (2017), and Snow with Kalya Ramu (2020). She has two full length albums: Beneath (2021) which features Mike Murley on saxophones, Reknee Irene Harrett on bass, and Keith Barstow on drums, and In a Summer Dream (2022), which is co-lead by Mike Murley and features bassist Jim Vivian.