Niagara Youth Orchestra Celebrates 50 Years!

The Niagara Youth Orchestra is celebrating its 50th anniversary!  Founded in 1965 by local music teacher, Paul van Dongen, the orchestra has been the premiere training ground for local young musicians for five decades. Anniversary Celebrations take place May 30 and 31, culminating with a commemorative concert on May 31 at 3:30 pm at the Holiday Inn and Suites Conference Centre, St. Catharines.  The performance will feature the Beginner, Junior and Senior Orchestras, as well as an alumni orchestra.  Admission is pay-what-you-can at the door; join us as we celebrate 50 years of the NYO! 

Former conductors Paul van Dongen, Tak Ng Lai and Michael Newnham have been invited to conduct at the alumni concert which will feature trumpeter Stuart Laughton, just one of the NYO’s renowned alumni.  All past members are invited to register on line at to participate in the event-filled celebration weekend.

Founded as the St. Catharines Junior Symphony under the baton of Paul van Dongen, the orchestra has a long and illustrious history of tours, competitions, media appearances and ongoing development.  For more information about the Niagara Youth Orchestra, visit

Watch for further announcements of special guest performers and our 50th anniversary concert line-up and celebrate with the NYO!