If you see the tall, handsome and charismatic Cooper brothers from a distance, you might assume the slightly taller of the two is the elder brother — 20-year-old Abraham.
That assumption would be wrong.
Victoriano Cooper, at 14, is a half-inch taller than his 6-foot-3-inch sibling.
Easy-spoken and polite, the brothers are the sons of Charles and Adelie Cooper, who live in Early and work as a physician’s assistant and chemo nurse, respectively.
Abraham, an Early High School graduate, is a Howard Payne University student who will graduate in the spring of 2019 with a double major — biochemistry and music performance, with a primary in piano and secondary in saxophone. He plans to attend medical school in Missouri.
Victoriano, an Early Middle School student, is interested in law.
The siblings met for an interview with the Bulletin at HPU’s Grace Chapel, where they had agreed to perform a few songs — Abraham on piano, Victoriano on violin — as part of the interview.
Victoriano has typically been known as “Vic,” but his name on the program for May First Baptist Church’s Hymn and Gospel Music Concert lists him by the more formal Victoriano. When asked how he wanted to be identified in a Bulletin article, he chose the longer name.
“Now it’s set in stone. You can’t change it,” Abraham joked about his younger brother’s answer.
The two will be playing music together at the Hymn and Gospel Music Concert, which is from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday, May 20. The concert is a fundraiser for the church’s 2,400-square-foot expansion of its fellowship hall.
Abraham is the pianist at First Baptist May, and Victoriano also plays music at the church regularly. Abraham is also the pianist for the Spanish service at St. Mary’s Catholic Church.
Abraham began learning piano at age 6, when his parents enrolled him at HPU’s pre-college music program. As a college student, Abraham is studying under Dr. Elizabeth Wallace.
Abraham said he might remember “parts of starting out” with his first piano lessons, when he used “a very colorful book that made it fun.”
He said his parents told him that whatever he chose for a career, he should continue playing music.
As an Early High School student, Abraham was involved in athletics including baseball and tennis.
Victoriano began learning piano at age 5, and also studies under Wallace. He also plays violin, saxophone and “a little bit of drums.” As a middle school student, he is involved in numerous activities including robotics, future problem solving, the National Junior Honor Society and athletics including basketball, tennis and track.
The brothers enjoy playing music together and accompanying each other.
When asked if he’s proud of his younger brother, Abraham replied, “I am. Sometimes he may not feel it. I am proud of him. He works hard.”
“Yes sir,” Victoriano replied when asked the same question.
Their pastor, John Tunnell, offered his own observation: “Those boys love each other and they encourage each other,” Tunnell said.