Nathan Hiltz

Jazz Guitar

We are really looking forward to welcoming Nathan Hiltz to Music Camp!

Nathan is a jazz guitarist and music educator in Toronto. He teaches at Humber College and at Grace Church on the Hill where he is Artist-In-Residence. Nathan has collaborated with Jill Barber, Alex Pangman, Drew Jurecka, and Brandi Disterheft. He has performed with The Toronto Symphony Orchestra, The Toronto Concert Orchestra, THe Art of Time Ensemble, and in 2022 played duets with Michael Buble at Meridian Hall in Toronto. His new group, ‘Thermo’, is co-led with Ottawa pianist Mike Manny. Their debut album ‘Birdlike’ has been heard on Jazz FM and Saturday Night Jazz on CBC. Nathan founded ‘Tiny Guitars’ in 2021, offering weekly guitar classes for over 30 children and adults at Grace Church on the Hill, providing instruments, materials, and instruction at no cost to families. 

Born in Antigonish, Nova Scotia in 1980, Nathan began studying guitar at age 12 with a family friend and then later with Ross Anderson, a disciple of George Benson, at the Halifax Folklore Centre. At 15 he met alto saxophonist and Dalhousie music professor Don Palmer  and was introduced to the jazz of Lee Konitz, Lennie Tristano, and John Coltrane. After listening to Lenny Breau, he started to hear other great Canadian jazz guitarists like Sonny Grenwich, Ed Bickert, and Lorne Lofsky. Soon after moving to Toronto at age 18 he began performing with drummer Norman Marshall Villeneuve and pianist / hammond organist Bernie Senensky. He has since been recognized as an important voice on the Canadian guitar. Nathan studied with Canadian jazz icons like Don Thomposon, Alex Dean, and Rob McConnell of the Boss Brass. In 2014 Nathan was honoured to perform posthumously with McConnell’s Mighty Boss Brass at Koerner Hall in Toronto.

So far Nathan has appeared on over 30 albums. They include guitar trio, organ trio, organ quartet with saxophone, and quartet with saxophone. He has also composed and arranged jazz music for voice including The Bright Lunch Trio featuring Whitney Ross Barris and his Mass for Guitar and Singers, the latter recorded with SATB and subsequently performed by the Grace Church on the Hill choir. Most recently his genre bending folk jazz group ‘Samways’ received a grant from the Toronto Arts Council to record stunning vocal interpretations of early Canadian poetry in a  female vocal trio featuring jazz singer virtuosos Shannon Butcher, Melissa Lauren, and Jessica Lalonde.

There is much more to say and know about Nathan Hiltz. You can learn more by visiting his links below. We’re thrilled he’s joining us at Camp this year and look forward to everyone there having a chance to meet and work with him!

Learn more about Nathan here:



Instagram: @natehiltz

The Strawberry Social @ Grace Church on the Hill 

Thermo New Piano / Guitar Quartet Album 

Tiny Guitars – Free weekly guitar class at Grace Church on the Hill 

The Body Electric Podcast: Interviews with Jazz musicians! Listen on Itunes or on Spotify