The Niagara Youth Orchestra - proudly supporting the advancement of music and the arts in Niagara since 1965. 

Our History

The St. Catharines Junior Symphony was formed and directed under the baton of Paul van Dongen in 1965, later renamed the St. Catharines Youth Orchestra before becoming known as the Niagara Youth Orchestra (NYO) in 1980. During the early seasons, the orchestra entered the Toronto Kiwanis Music Festival, frequently winning their class, and in 1969, was invited to play at the Grand Finale Concert in Massey Hall. In its centennial year, the NYO appeared at Expo '67 in Montreal and was also featured on a television segment of "Music in Your Life". In 1973, the orchestra sent an unprecedented 12 members to the National Youth Orchestra of Canada. 

Over the years, the NYO has released two recordings: a record in the early 70's and "Performance '98", in both CD and cassette format. In response to a demand for more opportunities for younger, less experienced musicians, the Junior Ensemble Program was initiated in 1985 and became the Junior Orchestra (JNYO) under the baton of Laura Thomas in 1993. 

In recent years, the NYO has toured to Austria and Newfoundland and continue to participate in various national and international exchanges. This year, the JNYO will tour to Quebec.  

In 2015, we will celebrate our 50th anniversary - come and join us! If you are an alumni of the NYO, or would like to be apart of the NYO as we prepare for this milestone, please let us know.

For more information about the Niagara Youth Orchestra, please contact us at: