Young Texas Artists Music Competition Accepting Applications

Event Set for March 6-8 at Historic Crighton Theatre

CONROE, TX (November 8, 2013) – Applications are now being accepted for the 30th annual Young Texas Artists Music Competition (YTA) hosted by the Montgomery County Performing Arts Society.

The competition is open to musicians between the ages of 18 and 32 who are Texas residents or students enrolled in a Texas college, university or music school. Professional performance opportunities and $20,000 in monetary prizes and will be awarded.

The musicians compete in their choice of four divisions: Voice; Piano; Strings; and Winds, Brass, Percussion, Harp and Guitar.

Unique to YTA, a panel of five distinguished judges, all esteemed leaders in their respective disciplines, will provide valuable, written critique to all competitors. Judges Becky Tobin (Voice) from the Houston Chamber Choir, Brad Mansell (Cello) from the National Symphony and Miyoko Lotto (Piano) from the Manhattan School of Music are expected to return for the 2014 competition.

Another key distinction of YTA is the close connection between the performers and the music community in Conroe. Area volunteers support the competition in every way from picking up judges at the airport to opening their homes to YTA competitors. Last year, nearly half of the competitors stayed in the homes of YTA volunteers. Lasting friendships and bonds from this intimate experience are not uncommon; many host volunteers remain in touch with their competitors long after the competition is over.

“There is nothing institutional about this competition. There is a lot of love – for the music, for the artists, and for the community,” said Emelyne Bingham, noted conductor, teacher and YTA artistic director. “This combination of talent and support is like a good, home-cooked recipe. It simply cannot be replicated anywhere else.”

Preliminary rounds take place Thursday, Friday and Saturday (March 6, 7 and 8). These performances are free and open to the public. The top two finalists from each division will perform in the Finalists’ Concert and Awards on Saturday, March 8th at the historic Crighton Theatre in downtown Conroe.

A Grand Prize will be awarded, along with Gold and Silver Medals for each division and an Audience Choice award.

The Finalists’ Concert will be held in conjunction with the Celebrate with the Stars Gala. The event will spotlight YTA alumni from the past 30 years who have gone on to great careers.

“The Audience Choice Award is very dear to my heart,” said Susie Pokorski, YTA chair. “Thirty years ago, the original intent of the competition was to give a wonderful gift to the people of Montgomery County. The focus of the competition extends beyond the technical to the performance itself – and how they touch and entertain the audience.”

To be considered, those interested must first complete and return the application form along with all accompanying fees and materials. Complete information, application forms and eligibility requirements are available at The deadline for all submissions is December 31, 2013.

“The caliber of talent in Texas is amazing. Every year I am surprised and blown away by the performances,” said Bingham.

For more information on submitting an application for the competition, contact Young Texas Artists at or 713-574-9820.

To inquire about sponsorship opportunities, make a donation, or volunteer, contact Susie Pokorski at 936-756-7017 or

About YTA

Young Texas Artists Music Competition was created in 1983 by the Montgomery County Performing Arts Society to encourage excellence in young musicians and further artistic growth throughout Texas. Past YTA winners have gone on to perform in prestigious orchestras and opera companies around the world, and many others have become respected academicians in highly ranked universities and music schools.