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Benefits & Testimonials

How will the CCOC benefit my child?

As Canada’s only permanent children’s opera company that commissions and produces operas for children on a regular basis, your child will have a truly unique opportunity to apply their musical and dramatic education. They will sing music suited to the developing voice, build self-esteem, nurture their love for music, and have opportunities to perform with leading professional music groups and ensembles.

But even more than that:

  • Kids love to mix songs and stories! Most children’s presentations in TV, film and theatre are narrated with music.  The unique balance between music and drama activities at CCOC brings the fun of storytelling into the music, and the magic of music into our stories. 
  • We are training for the future – not instant gratification:  the training program is grounded in healthy, sustainable technique and real performance and music skills.  Every role is earned.
  • We provide life-changing performance opportunities that kids simply can’t get anywhere else.
  • We actively encourage diverse applicants from all socio-economic backgrounds - financial aid is available to applicants if needed.
  • Arts are good training – Arts education teaches skills that provide a competitive advantage in the global marketplace.  82% of participants in structured music programs graduated high school, compared to 68% of those who do not[1].



How does CCOC benefit the community?

  • Art unites – Help bring together children, youth, and their families from every part of the socio-economic spectrum to build a strong cross-cultural community
  • Art helps – At-risk students who got involved in arts programs perform better in school[2]
  • Art stimulates – arts programming stimulates local businesses.


[1] “Music – A Catalyst for Technology Hubs and Innovative Talent.” Information and Communications Technology Council, 2013,\2013/08/MusicCatalyst.pdf

[2] “The Arts and Achievement in At-Risk Youth.” National Endowment for the Arts, 2012,




Richard Margison, OC
Opera Singer and CCOC Alumna Parent

“The CCOC is a real national musical treasure...  this company gives young people an opportunity to be a part of a wonderful musical tradition.  I am very proud of what a bright musical light they are in the current fabric of this great country.  Keep making music!!!”


Karina Gauvin
Opera Singer and CCOC Alumna

“I absolutely loved my time as a chorister in the CCOC! I have many fond memories of concerts and productions I sang in Doctor Canon's Cure, The Saint Mathew Passion, Tosca, Wozzeck to name but a few.  Rare experiences for a child so young.  Little did I know that those experiences would pave the way for a life in music! Thank you CCOC!”   In February 2013 Karina's new album "Alessandro" won the Prix Caecilia of the Belgian Press Union.  Listen to Haendel, Alessandro, "No, più soffrir non voglio".  Congratulations Karina!


Alexander Neef
General Director - Canadian Opera Company

"The Canadian Children’s Opera Company is a wonderful ensemble of young singers that have delighted audiences from the Canadian Opera Company mainstage time and time again. The professionalism and commitment to their craft, as well as their exceptional talent, belies their young years. Beyond the CCOC’s role as a children’s chorus, the organization itself plays an essential role when it comes to arts education. For many of the young people involved in the CCOC, the chorus is how they make their first connection to opera, musical theatre and the performing arts in general. It is a vital contribution to fostering the arts in our community."

photo: Bo Huang

“At the CCOC my child has definitely encountered a great range of music, got to know and work with a variety of Canadian and international musicians, learned better singing skills and techniques, acquired a professional attitude, and found good friends.”  Elena Lemeneva-Wollesen (Principal Chorus Parent)


“The CCOC has opened the world of opera to my children when impressions count most, when they are young. Our family's love of opera is alive and well in our youngest members now, which is a joy to see. It is more than a strong musical education for them because it is fun. We look forward to many more years of being part of the CCOC.”  Carla Tonelli (Intermediate Chorus Parent)


“CCOC has helped our daughter shape her musical appreciation in addition to giving her confidence by the inclusion of the drama component.”  Sogut Gulec (Apprentice Chorus Parent)


“My child has gained confidence on stage. She has been able to put her voice to use and has found it to be a rewarding and exciting journey with the choir.”  Mila Yudina (Apprentice Chorus Parent)


“The CCOC chorus has given our daughter confidence in her own voice.  She now sings whenever she is happy and has become a leader in her music class at school.  Thank you!” Anne Dibben and Robert Emerson  (Apprentice Chorus Parents)



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