The University of Houston and Houston Symphony will merge the University of Houston’s Cynthia Woods Mitchell Young Artist Competition at the Texas Music Festival and the Houston Symphony’s Ima Hogg Competition. The new Cynthia Woods Mitchell-Ima Hogg Young Artist Competition will take place on June 11, 2023, in the Moores Opera House at UH during the annual Texas Music Festival (June 6-24). The winner of the competition will have the opportunity to perform as a soloist with the Texas Music Festival Orchestra on June 24, and the Houston Symphony will extend an invitation for the winner to perform alongside the symphony at an upcoming performance.
The Houston Symphony will use internal funding designated for support of the Ima Hogg Competition to supplement the prize money for the new Mitchell-Hogg Competition, allowing the Texas Music Festival to award significantly higher cash prizes to competition winners. These terms add appreciable value to the Texas Music Festival’s former Mitchell Young Artist Competition, notably through the solo appearance with the Houston Symphony. Additionally, the new Mitchell-Hogg Competition will enhance the recruitment of musicians to the Texas Music Festival.
“We are thrilled to have this opportunity to partner with the Houston Symphony to add such significant value to the Texas Music Festival,” said Andrew Davis, dean of the University of Houston Kathrine G. McGovern College of the Arts. “TMF musicians who are starting their professional careers in music will be the real beneficiaries of this agreement. That would make both Cynthia Woods Mitchell and Ima Hogg proud.”
The Mitchell-Hogg Competition is open to all Texas Music Festival Orchestra members, who are chosen through a competitive audition process. Up to eight finalists may be selected for the competition’s open-to-the-public final round. First, second and third place prizes are awarded, as well as an Audience Choice prize.
“The Ima Hogg Competition has a nearly 50-year storied history, one that was only interrupted by the pandemic,” said John Mangum, Houston Symphony executive director, CEO, and holder of the Margaret Alkek Williams Chair. “As we considered its future, it made complete sense to join forces with the prestigious Cynthia Woods Mitchell Young Artist Competition at the University of Houston’s Texas Music Festival. Both organizations are deeply committed to creating opportunities for young people to connect with music, so it seemed like a natural partnership. It’s very exciting to combine resources to create something for these emerging artists: a new competition that’s even greater than the sum of its parts.”
The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Young Artist Competition was founded at the inception of the Texas Music Festival in 1990 by George and Cynthia Mitchell to provide a competition experience for members of the festival orchestra. Today, the Cynthia and George Mitchell Foundation continues this generous legacy and is honored to be collaborating with the Houston Symphony on the new Cynthia Woods Mitchell-Ima Hogg Young Artist Competition.
Cynthia Woods Mitchell-Ima Hogg Young Artist Competition, Final Round
June 11 at 2 p.m. at Dudley Recital Hall, Room 132, Fine Arts Building, 4188 Elgin St., Houston, TX 77204
Texas Music Festival’s young artists compete for the chance to perform as a soloist with the TMF Orchestra and win cash prizes. A distinguished panel of judges will choose the winner, but attendees help choose the Audience Favorite prize. Join us in discovering classical music’s rising star soloists!