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Here are your 2022 Inspired By KPAC winners

The COVID-19 omicron variant once again kept TPR from inviting the public to our annual showcase of young talent, so for the second year TPR decided to hold INSPIRED BY KPAC live on the radio instead!

While observing COVID protocols, middle and high school performers brought their talents to our studios on January 22, 2022 for the eighth annual competition, featuring solo and ensemble performances, a juried art show, and written word entries, all inspired by the classical music heard on Texas Public Radio’s KPAC 88.3 FM.

Although the public wasn't able to see the art in person or read the poetry and prose, we have compiled all the Finalists' entries on these two web pages:

The First Place winners in each category were:

Helen Lan, Health Careers HS


Quid Nunc Saxophone Quartet, Reagan HS


Jolie Mao, Saint Mary's Hall


Gabrielle Beck, TMI Episcopal

All of the musical performances, as well as interviews with select contestants, will be broadcast on KPAC 88.3 FM on Saturday, February 26 at 7 p.m. on “Performance Saturday,” Texas Public Radio’s weekly showcase of great performances from the stages of south central Texas. You can see the program now in the YouTube window below.

The final round was adjudicated by Riely Francis, assistant principal percussion with the San Antonio Symphony, Deborah MartinSan Antonio Express-News arts writer, TPR's Norma Martinez, and Adriana Flores, Vice President of Alamo Music Center.

The First Place winners in each category were awarded a $1,000 cash prize, funded by Dr. Lindsay Irvin, Milton Babbitt, and the Hart-Sheehy Fund.

Second and Third Place winners in the Solo Musician category were Vincent Garcia-Hettinger and Nellie Ingram. Second and Third Place winners in the Visual Art category were James Keefe and George Campbell Leiloglou. Second and Third Place winners in the Written Word category were Ilya Fitzhugh and Kyra Keeling.

Congratulations to all of the winners!


"Bittersweet: A story of my grandmother's dementia"
By Gabrielle Beck
Inspired by "Clair de Lune" by Claude Debussy

The memories melt

Subtle and slow at first

Where did I place my purse, my keys?

Did I sign that check?

Masked by nodding, acknowledgement, and vagaries

Then, no longer driving me to the apple orchard

No longer baking homemade cinnamon rolls before dawn

No longer reading mystery novels curled up by the fire

No longer playing the piano, swaying with fluid keystrokes, head tilted down with that slight curl in your lip from intensity and passion as you play Clair de Lune

Slipping away

The past becomes unfamiliar

The future holds nothing tangible

But, there is laughter in the moment

A sarcastic movie line, silly dog running in circles, grandson blowing bubbles

And there are fleeting glimpses of recollection

An old song on the radio from the Beatles where you belt the refrain

And the piano concerto that breathes life into your fingers again

For an instant you are back with me

The flow of notes

Runs through your ears and a spark of recognition ignites

Like your childhood stream

Your legs are carried by song back to the wedding dance

The glow in your eyes when surrounded by loved ones

Flooding with warm embrace

Music imprinted on the soul

Yet, just like the outro, colorful faces of the past fade again

They are out of reach

Emptiness invades this precious space

Forgotten tears slowly trickle down your face


Inspired By KPAC is made possible by generous support from Camerata San Antonio, Pay it Forward Clean and Sober Living, and Appraisals & Estate Sales by June Hayes.