The mission of the Houston Young Artists’ Concert (HYAC) is to showcase highly talented young classical musicians age 4 to 18 in a variety of venues throughout the city with the hope of fostering a greater appreciation for classical music in the Houston area.
In 1987 Shu Hao Pao and Sophia Gilmson dedicated themselves to working with the most talented young musicians that Houston has to offer by founding the Houston Young Artists’ Concert. Ms. Gilmson and Ms. Pao worked on their own until 1990 when the Clear Lake Chamber Music Society (CLCMS) offered an umbrella of its 501(c)(3) status to HYAC. In 1995, CLCMS and HYAC formally merged when CLCMS filed for a corporate name change to Houston Young Artists’ Concerts.
HYAC is operated solely by volunteers. Funds needed for its operations are raised from private and corporate donations, advertising in the concert program and concert ticket sales. Auditions and concerts are held every 2 years. The organization attempts to identify the most gifted and talented young musicians from the Houston area in order to provide them with quality opportunities to perform. This both supports and motivates young musicians to reach the highest levels of musical accomplishment. In the process, HYAC events augment the many professional and collegiate classical events in the Houston area, fulfilling a full range of musical presentations.
HYAC has worked with other Houston area organizations to provide venues for showcasing these young talents. These organizations include: the Asian American Festival, MECA, Shepherd School of Music, Miller Outdoor Theater, Shriner Hospitals for Children, DePelchin Children’s Center, Japan-America Society of Houston, and The Forum retirement center. Over the years, the popularity of HYAC has brought capacity audiences to every performance.