About CHORUS NIAGARA
Our Mission | To be a cornerstone of the Niagara arts community through creative and passionate programs that entertain and enthrall.
Formed in 1963 as the St. Catharines Symphony Chorus, Chorus Niagara has grown from a modest 24 members to 100 choristers. As Niagara's premier auditioned symphonic choir, Chorus Niagara draws its membership from throughout the Niagara peninsula and from as far away as Hamilton and Buffalo NY. In 1989, the NSA Board invited Robert Cooper to become the conductor and, moving in a new direction, gave him complete artistic control. Since then the Chorus has doubled its membership and established an unprecedented standard of excellence. In 1997 Chorus Niagara incorporated itself as a separate organization from the Niagara Symphony while still maintaining a satisfying professional relationship with its founder.
In addition to performing both a diverse blend of traditional and contemporary works, Chorus Niagara supports Canadian music, programming, premiering and commissioning works by Canada’s leading choral composers as well as composers of international renown. Our mandate to engage emerging Canadian soloists has helped launch the careers of wonderful young vocalists including Catherine Robbin, Brett Polegato, Alex Dobson and Measha Brueggergosman.
Chorus Niagara has been honored to work with many guest conductors. During the 1998-99 season, Chorus Niagara took part in a CD recording project with John Rutter, and performed in 2004 the Canadian premiere of both Rutter’s Mass for the Children and Feel the Spirit under his baton. In 2001 Sir David Willcocks conducted Hymns for all Seasons as well as its biennial Messiah performance in 2002. In the summer of 2007, the Chorus was invited to sing Beethoven’s 9th Symphony with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus at Art Park in New York. Over the past several years Chorus Niagara has enjoyed successful collaborations with the Orpheus Choir of Toronto, London Pro Musica, Mississauga Choral Union, Portsmouth Choral Society and Orillia Cellar Singers, performing many large-scale works for choir and orchestra including the Requiems of Berlioz and Verdi, Dvorak’s Stabat Mater, and Jenkins’ The Armed Man.
In May 2009 Chorus Niagara embarked on its first international tour, collaborating with the Chantry Singers culminating in a live concert in Bath Abbey, England and with the Portsmouth Choral Union under the direction of Jonathan Willcocks. A second international tour also completed. The Chorus has performed at Niagara's Wine Festival, at the Olympic Torch Relay ceremony in Niagara Falls, was featured in the opening act of the Niagara College Seafood Gala, and the opening of the new FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre in St. Catharines.
On Nov.13 2010 Chorus Niagara performed in Alphabet Photography's Christmas Flash Mob - performing Handel's "Hallelujah" chorus at the Seaway Mall food court in Welland, Ontario. To date, the flash mob video has been watched more than 54 million times!
Community outreach is a priority for Chorus Niagara. High school vocalists are invited once a year to join the Side-by-Side High School Chorale to rehearse and perform in a season production. In 2007 Chorus Niagara debuted the Chorus Niagara Children’s Choir, providing quality musical education to children ages 3-18. See chorusniagaracc.org for more information.
Chorus Niagara takes pride in being acknowledged for its musical excellence, challenging repertoire, innovative programming and commitment to community and educational outreach.