Iain Cooper was born in Bristol and began his musical education as a chorister first at St. Mary Redcliffe and later at the Cathedral. He studied the organ with the late Clifford Harker at Bristol Cathedral and with Walter Hillsman at Oxford and the piano with Norman Jones in Bristol and with Robert Ferguson in Cambridge. He read Music at Keble College, Oxford where he was accompanist to the Chapel Choir and directed the Arcadian Singers, a select undergraduate chamber choir, and the Cumnor Choral Society. He also holds the degree of M.Litt of Bristol University for his thesis on the composer Gerald Finzi.
Iain began his teaching career in Salisbury and then moved to Peterborough to become Director of Music at the King’s School, the Cathedral’s choir school. He spent 1988 to 2001 in Cambridge, most of them as Director of Music at the Perse School. He also directed the Walmisley Singers of Cambridge and the Cambridge Youth Orchestra.
In December 2001 Iain moved to Cheltenham to pursue a freelance career, examining for the Associated Board, tutoring for the Open University's Music Department and teaching piano at Dean Close School. He became conductor of Bridgwater Choral Society in 2004 and is now based in Salisbury, maintaining his teaching and conducting commitments in the South West.