COLUMBUS, GEORGIA, May 3, 2016—The Youth Orchestra of Greater Columbus is pleased to announce the winner of the Maestro for a Moment campaign is Mr. Oz Roberts. Mr. Roberts was one of five candidates to be the next Maestro for a Moment. The five Maestro candidates were: Dr. Kendall Handy, Chief of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Columbus Regional; Ruth Kiralfy, Ninety-nine years young and still making music; Isaac Leverett, Brookstone School Band Director; Oz Roberts, Second Vice President of Event Productions and Audiovisual Services at Aflac; and Steve Scott, Retired Master Putterer.  For over a month all five candidates worked to gain votes. The winner was announced at the Youth Orchestra of Greater Columbus concert held on April 26, 2016, 7:00 p.m. at RiverCenter for the Performing Arts.

Mr. Roberts conducted Sousa’s Stars and Stripes Forever; received a one of a kind sash; and a framed poster. This event is an annual fundraiser for the YOGC and this year the candidates raised a total of $18,009.

What a pleasure and an honor it was to be asked to raise money for YOGC, especially with the other contestants who made the competition so much fun!  It was because the gracious support from my family, friends and coworkers that I was able to help YOGC exceed their 2016 fundraising goal for the Maestro competition. Having been in orchestras and bands from elementary through college, it was an honor to be able to finally stand in front of the incredible group of talented young people and direct them. I had a Blast directing the orchestra in the “Stars and Stripes Forever”. It was the perfect song to have fun with. – Oz Roberts, Second Vice President Event Productions and Audiovisual Services, Aflac


I am thrilled with all of our candidates from our 2016 Maestro for a Moment campaign. They all worked really hard, and I think we all had a lot of fun during this campaign. I want to offer my congratulations to Dr. Roberts for his hard work and his awesome conducting on April 26. The money the candidates raised represents over 10% of YOGC’s overall budget, and it allows us to reach hundreds of young musicians and offer them engaging and challenging orchestral experiences.   -Stephanie Erdman Payne, YOGC Executive Director

Maestro for a Moment was sponsored by our 2016-16 season sponsor Aflac, concert sponsor Rivertown Subaru, and our media sponsors 103.7litefm and Kelley Outdoor Media.

Since 1993, the Youth Orchestra of Greater Columbus has been teaching the area’s most talented young musicians. Led by music director James Palmer, this outstanding orchestra program includes the Youth Orchestra made up of intermediate and advanced string, brass, wind and percussion musicians, the String Orchestra composed of young string players, chamber groups, a percussion ensemble and a summer string camp. Rehearsals are held each Monday evening during the school season at the RiverCenter for the Performing Arts. Visit www.YOGC.org for audition requirements and an application for the 2015-16 regular orchestra season.  For additional information e-mail info@yogc.org.