2017 - 2018 SEASON

Our Mission: To be a cornerstone of the Niagara arts community through creative and passionate programs that entertain and enthrall.

The Robert Cooper Choral Scholars Program

The Robert Cooper Choral Scholars Program was created in 2013 by Chorus Niagara on the occasion of Robert Cooper’s 25th Anniversary as Artistic Director. This endowed program will help to support and encourage aspiring Niagara-area vocal students pursing post-secondary vocal studies. As participants in the program, students will have the opportunity to work with one of Canada’s top choral conductors, further their solo experience and musical training, and enjoy the mass-choir experience with Chorus Niagara.


2016-2017 Choral Scholars


"My name is Adrianna Polito. I'm 24 years old. I have a Bachelor of Arts in music from Brock University and I'm currently training to be an opera singer. I have opened for Matt Dusk, the Nylons and Canada's Three tenors. I've also performed both the Canadian and American national anthems at the Roger's Centre in Toronto for a crowd of 41,000 people when I was 16 years old. My dream is to sing at La Fenice opera house in Venice."


Taylor is a recent graduate of the McMaster music program, receiving a diploma in Vocal Performance and a minor in French Language. He sings regularly in the Bach Elgar Choir and St. Joseph's parish choir of Hamilton, as well as the Grand River Chorus in Brantford and several other vocal ensembles. This year he participated in Ontario Youth Choir under the direction of Bob Cooper. Taylor continues to develop his choral scholarship and choral singing technique by performing many works from the choral repertoire past and present through the conducting work of the amazing musicians who lead these organizations.


Testimonials from our 2015-16 Scholars

“If you’re looking for a challenging yet rewarding experience, that tests your musicality and confidence, and at the same time displays your talent in the most satisfying of ways… being a RCCS does just that. I was blown away at how welcoming and motivated Chorus Niagara was, even after long rehearsals (for the Bach B Minor Mass of course), and how much I grew as a musician, and as a soloist. Robert Cooper is an amazing conductor who dedicates his heart and soul into everything he does and flawlessly accomplishes it all. From that leadership the choir is inspired to make beautiful music.  I enjoyed every second of my time as a RCCS, and would do it again in a heartbeat”. - Victoria Hoshowsky, soprano


"My time as a RCCS was incredibly valuable and enriching. It was such a great opportunity to learn more about choral music in a large environment and for solo exposure. It was a joy working with such talented musicians and amazing artistic director, Robert Cooper, who all hold themselves to such high standards of performance and professionalism." - Billy Sadler, tenor


RCCS Details

The Robert Cooper Choral Scholars Program operates on an annual basis throughout the Chorus Niagara Season. Choral Scholars are expected to participate fully in all Chorus activity as an active Chorus member. Scholars will attend all rehearsal and concerts, demonstrate musical leadership and, at the discretion of the Artistic Director, have the opportunity to be featured as soloists during the concert season.

There are currently four available spaces; one for each vocal section (SATB).

Acceptance into the program is subject to review of application, audition and current available space in the program.

As a member of the Robert Cooper Choral Scholars Program, scholars will;

  • Be exposed to various aspects of arts management of a large non-profit arts and community organization including administration and fundraising
  • Develop teaching and leadership skills through sectional rehearsals
  • Expand sight reading skills, choral techniques and performance deportment
  • Further solo performance profiles
  • Work with professional musicians and a skilled Artistic Director
  • Receive an annual honorarium for their participation in the program

The Chorus Niagara season typically runs from September to the following May, however concert and seasonal dates are subject to change. For further details regarding dates, please see the included season schedule.

Chorus Niagara offers an annual honorarium of $750.00/season for each of its Choral Scholars.


We are happy to hear from young singers interested in participating in the Robert Cooper Choral Scholars Program

Auditions are scheduled in the summer in advance of the new concert season.

Interested singers must prepare two contrasting selections (opera arias, oratorio or art song). In addition singers will be tested for their sight-reading skills, technical ability and musical awareness.

For more information on becoming a Robert Cooper Choral Scholar please contact the Program Coordinator at cnadmin@becon.org.

 A Note from Artistic Director Robert Cooper, CM

My professional career and passion has focused on youth in opera and choral music. With Chorus Niagara, I envision a trio of youth choral ensembles that is unique within the Niagara region choral community: the Chorus Niagara Children’s Choir, the Side-by-Side High School Chorale and now our newly established Choral Scholars Program.

The Choral Scholars Program is an essential element to our organizational vision. A dynamic synergy is achieved when talented young professional singers merge with dedicated amateur singers. Not only is the relationship mutually advantageous, but the benefits of ensemble experience, voice blending, language skills, interaction with conductors and collegial awareness are all invaluable to the Scholars and their future career development as vocal artists.

Robert Cooper CM


Robert Cooper

 Read more about Robert Cooper.

 Read more about Chorus Niagara.

For more information about being a Robert Cooper Choral Scholar, or to donate to the program, please contact us at: