top of page
JSO-YAC_for newsletter.png

2023-2024 Jefferson Symphony Orchestra Young Artists Competition

The JSO*YAC live finals take place at Colorado Christian University in Lakewood, Colo. on Saturday, January 6, 2024.

The top finalist of JSO*YAC performs their winning concerto repertoire with Jefferson Symphony Orchestra and in April 2024 in Golden, CO, and receives $5,000 in cash prizes. 

acceptd logo.png

Visit acceptd to begin your application.

2022-23 JSO*YAC - Top Three Winners

FIRST PLACE - Hans-Derek Yu, 20, from Bloomington, Indiana, attends the Jacobs School of Music as a student of Arnaldo Cohen. In addition to our JSO*YAC Grand Prize, he has recently won awards from the Osaka International and Chopin International competitions. Hans has performed with the Bravura Philharmonic, the Old York Road Symphony, and the Northern Lights Music Festival orchestras.


Hans-Derek Yu performed his winning repertoire, Sergei Prokofiev's Piano Concerto No. 3, with Jefferson Symphony and guest conductor Scott O'Neil at the Season 70 Young Artists concert

— April 2, 2023, 3:00 p.m., at the Green Center in Golden. View press release here.

SECOND PLACE - Steven Dong, 22 with Beethoven's Piano Concerto #2. Steven is currently a Master's student at Eastman School of Music with Alan Chow. 

THIRD PLACE - Yifu Xu, 21, with Liszt's Piano Concerto #1. Yifu is a student of Corey McVicar at San Francisco Conservatory of Music. 

Previous Winners of JSO*YAC

Ji Eun Park 1.jpg

Ji Eun Park
YAC 2021, viola

Gostein Profile.jpg

Daniel Gostein

YAC 2020, marimba


Samuel Vargas

YAC 2019, violin


Kamalia Freyling

YAC 2017, clarinet

Each year the instrumental focus changes: JSO*YAC '24 for Woodwinds, Brass, and Percussion instruments performing concerto repertoire or similar works; and JSO*YAC '25 for orchestral strings, guitar, and harp. Jefferson Symphony invites you to contact for any further inquiries and we will continue to post updates on this page.

JSO*YAC Experiences


“I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to come to Colorado and play for the judges, audience and my peers. It is sometimes very hard as a young musician to find rewarding venues to play for. Here, the music is obviously treasured by the listeners and participants alike. Thank you for giving me this opportunity. I could not have hoped for a better weekend.”

– Finalist 

“The finalists are all winners! It was a very exciting event to judge. It was revitalizing to be able to listen to such high quality performances, which reflect the musicians' dedication to their art. It made me want to go home and practice!”

– Judge

bottom of page