YOSA changes kids’ lives through music.

YOSA changes kids’ lives through music.


During the month of February, Time Warner Cable News is committed to informing our viewers of the sometimes alarming trends facing our kids’ health as well as providing helpful tips for busy parents. Get more information on Fit Kids February, including the Fit Kids Challenge, healthy shopping suggestions and ways you can get involved to help make you and your children healthier.

The Youth Orchestras of San Antonio traces its roots back more than 60 years to the San Antonio Youth Symphony.

Now composed of 350 musicians and eight different orchestras, the orchestra seeks to help kids through music. Youth Orchestra of San Antonio director Troy Peters says through the orchestra, kids get an enlarged sense of their own potential — both in music and whatever else they pursue.

“YOSA changes kids’ lives through music here in San Antonio,” Peters said. “We work with hundreds of kids throughout the city on unleashing their own musical potential.”

Find out more in the special Fit Kids edition of “Local Wonders.”

YOSA Concerto Competition winner to perform with San Antonio Symphony

YOSA Concerto Competition winner to perform with San Antonio Symphony

Chris Gokelman is the winner of the 2014/15 YOSA Concerto Competition and will perform William Walton’s Viola Concerto with the San Antonio Symphony on January 18, 2015. Chris currently studies with Allyson Dawkins, Principal Violist of the San Antonio Symphony. He is a past student of Christopher Parsons, has studied with Roger Myers at the University of Texas at Austin, and has participated in a master class with Peter Slowik of Oberlin Conservatory.

Chris is a senior at St. Anthony Catholic High School and has been playing the viola for nearly six years. He has been a part of YOSA since 2009, serving as Principal Violist for both the YOSA Sinfonietta Strings and YOSA Symphony Orchestras and as the current Principal for the YOSA Philharmonic, of which he has been a member for four years. During his time with the YOSA Philharmonic, Chris has performed alongside notable soloists Edgar Meyer, Abdiel Vázquez, Richard Stoltzman, Tracy Silverman, Kenji Bunch, Christopher O’Riley, and Branford Marsalis (in February 2015), and has played with YOSA during the 2012 England and Wales Tour. Prior to his participation in the YOSA Philharmonic, Chris was invited to be a member of the Orchestra of the Incarnate Word/University of the Incarnate Word as an eighth grader.

For the past two years, Chris has been selected to participate in the Castleman Quartet Program East, founded by virtuoso violinist Charles Castleman, in Fredonia, New York. There he has studied with Charles Castleman, Allyson Dawkins, Laura Bossert, and Basil Vendryes, and performed in both chamber and solo recitals. He has also participated in the Summer Music Institute at the University of Texas, San Antonio, in 2011, during which he performed with the top chamber group. Chris has served as the Principal Violist for the Texas Music Educator’s Association Region 12 Orchestra for the past two years, and was the Principal Violist for the Texas All-State String Orchestra in 2014.

An active liturgical musician, he has performed for the Taizé Pilgrimage in Austin, Texas, has been a frequent convention musician for several major publisher showcases during the national conventions of the National Association of Pastoral Musicians since 2012, and has been a regular violist for church services and civic events since 2010. Chris has also been a featured performer of the annual American Guild of Organists “Organ Plus” Concert Series since 2013. As a member of his school’s jazz band, Chris was recognized as an exemplary soloist during the ensemble’s perfect score performance in the 2013 Texas Christian Interscholastic League All-State Competition. In 2014, he was awarded gold medal in the Division 1 of the Central Catholic Button Band Solo Competition.

For more information about this concert, please visit:


YOSA Philharmonic and San Antonio Symphony: Side-by-Side

YOSA Philharmonic and San Antonio Symphony: Side-by-Side

Sunday, January 18, 2015 | 3:00 pm

Pre-Concert Activities for Kids and Instrument Petting Zoo begin at 2:00 pm
One-hour concert performance begins at 3:00 pm
Laurie Auditorium at Trinity University
Akiko Fujimoto, conductor
Troy Peters, conductor and narrator

YOSA Philharmonic and San Antonio Symphony

Open the door to a “That could be me someday!” musical experience for the kids: bring them to see the inspiring talent of the YOSA Philharmonic musicians as they perform side-by-side with professional musicians of the San Antonio Symphony!  Recently returned from a successful tour of Vermont and Quebec, Canada, the YOSA Philharmonic is represented by 70 of the San Antonio area’s top musicians of high-school age.  Discover the kid-friendly “Enigma Variations” by English composer Edward Elgar, who wrote a set of short variations based on an “enigma” melody to describe the character of each of his friends.  Musical examples and narration will help to better enjoy the work!

Family Concerts are designed for children age 4-11, but can be enjoyed by persons of all ages. Bring the whole family for an afternoon of family fun!

There are no tickets for this event – admission is FREE! – first come, first seated.

For more about interaction between YOSA and the San Antonio Symphony, please visit:

Questions?  Call (210) 554-1010 or email tickets@sasymphony.org

YOSA receives National Endowment for the Arts grant

YOSA receives National Endowment for the Arts grant

National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Chairman Jane Chu announced today that YOSA is one of only 163 nonprofit organizations nationwide to receive an NEA Challenge America grant. YOSA is recommended for a $10,000 grant to support the production of Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana and associated outreach activities. Soprano Jamie-Rose Guarrine, tenor Ryland Angel, and baritone Zachary Gordin will rehearse and perform with the YOSA Philharmonic, the San Antonio Choral Society, the Children’s Chorus of San Antonio, and other local choruses. The vocal soloists will also conduct workshops and provide free concert tickets for choral students at local underserved and low-income schools. YOSA’s Carmina Burana will be performed on May 17, 2015, at 7 p.m. at the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts. Tickets are on sale through the Tobin Center box office.

NEA Chairman Jane Chu said, “I’m pleased to be able to share the news of our support through Challenge America, including the award to YOSA. The arts foster value, connection, creativity, and innovation for the American people, and these recommended grants demonstrate those attributes and affirm that the arts are part of our everyday lives.”

YOSA Music Director Troy Peters said, “We are especially grateful for the vote of confidence the NEA gives by awarding YOSA our second Challenge America grant. Having these three wonderful guest artists working with young singers in six different high schools will have a huge impact on the lives of hundreds of San Antonio students.”

The Challenge America category supports projects that extend the reach of the arts to underserved populations whose opportunities to experience the arts are limited by geography, ethnicity, economics, or disability. The NEA received 347 eligible Challenge America applications and will award 163 grants for a total of $1.63 million.

For a complete listing of projects recommended for Challenge America support, please visit the NEA website. Follow the conversation about this and other NEA‐funded projects on Twitter at #NEAFall2014.

For more than 65 years, YOSA has been changing kids’ lives through music. YOSA works with nearly 2,000 of the best young musicians in the San Antonio region, ranging in age from 7 to 21 years old. A resident company at the new Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, YOSA collaborates regularly with internationally renowned soloists and composers to present dynamic performances full of youthful energy. YOSA has also represented San Antonio on ten international tours, including recent trips to Canada, England, Wales, and China. For more information on YOSA, visit yosa.org.


You can support YOSA while you shop at Amazon! Click on the link below to learn more about AmazonSmile. Once you sign in, you can search for YOSA as your favorite charity. The AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price from your eligible AmazonSmile purchases.

Click HERE to learn more about AmazonSmile.

Youth Orchestras Of San Antonio

YOSA Concerto Competition 2014

YOSA Concerto Competition 2014

Check out this Texas Public Radio story to learn more about the YOSA Concerto Competition. It happens this Saturday, November 15, at 2 pm at St. David’s Episcopal Church; admission is free.


Branford Marsalis

Branford Marsalis

Branford Marsalis
Sunday, February 22, 2015
7 p.m.
Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, H-E-B Performance Hall
buy now Branford MarsalisNEA Jazz Master and three-time Grammy Award-winning saxophonist Branford Marsalis is one of the most revered instrumentalists of his time. In a rare San Antonio visit, Marsalis will present the same program he played in a 2011 New York Philharmonic concert that the New York Times hailed for its “gracious poise, supple tone, and insouciant swagger.” YOSA Music Director Troy Peters will also conduct Elgar’s popular “Enigma” Variations, a symphonic masterpiece that also contains 14 musical portraits of Elgar’s friends and family. The concert will open with the bluesy strut of American composer Kenji Bunch’s Supermaximum. Don’t miss this evening of exciting music with the YOSA Philharmonic, San Antonio’s very best young musicians.

Glazunov—Alto Saxophone Concerto
Schulhoff/Bennett—Jazz Concerto (Hot Sonata)
Strauss—Serenade in E-flat major, Op. 7
Elgar—“Enigma” Variations

Brahms Reimagined

Brahms Reimagined

Monday, February 11, 2013 7:30 p.m.
Trinity University’s Laurie Auditorium
Tickets available from Ticketmaster.
More Event Details »

As a featured partner in the San Antonio Symphony’s 2013 Brahms Festival, the YOSA Philharmonic will collaborate with the Children’s Chorus of San Antonio  for a program of Brahms, transcribed and reimagined. Here are some notes on the program, written by YOSA Music Director Troy Peters. Read More »

Stop! And Feel the Music.

Hear it, too. YOSA’s unique fundraising event on Saturday, January 26 is NOT your average gala. In fact, it’s far from it. It’s part cabaret, part pop-up orchestra, plus extraordinary food and drink.

Our musicians will show you their contemporary side with YOSA musicians performing unique versions of pop and rock songs. The YOSA Pop-Up Orchestra, made up of some of the region’s very best young musicians from the YOSA Philharmonic, will entertain guests with some of the biggest recent pop hits, including “Call Me Maybe” and a local variation on “Gangnam Style,” as well as familiar rock classics.
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YOSA receives $100,000 plus a Challenge Grant from the Kronkosky Charitable Foundation

YOSA receives $100,000 plus a Challenge Grant from the Kronkosky Charitable Foundation

Merry Christmas to us!

The Youth Orchestras of San Antonio (YOSA) got an early Christmas present this year, in the form of a grant from the Kronkosky Charitable Foundation.

The $150,000 award includes a$100,000 gift, plus a $50,000 challenge grant to cultivate new donors in 2013.  The Kronkosky Charitable Foundation will match dollar-for-dollar each new donor which YOSA cultivates by July 2013, up to an additional $50,000.  YOSA was one of many organizations receiving end-of-year grants in the region, some of which were highlighted in today’s Express-News.
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