Yoset Altamirano grew up in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. After graduation, she spent five years teaching music at a private school, but felt frustrated that music education was not emphasized more in her native country. In this episode, she recalls trying to instill an appreciation of music in her students and in their parents as well.
Altamirano soon received a scholarship to attend university but because music was not offered as a major, studied marketing instead. She still made time to perform in plays and opera and while working on a production of an opera by Verdi she met her husband who was a classical musician studying at the University of Southern Mississippi. After they married in 1998, she travelled with him to Hattiesburg where she auditioned for the choir and was awarded a scholarship.
According to Altamirano, studying music in the United States was a great opportunity. At the time the interview was conducted in 2002, she related feeling torn between staying here and returning to Honduras.