The Indiana Arts Commission (IAC) in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation announced today that Indiana’s Poetry Out Loud State Champion Lucia Walker, a senior at Bloomington High School South, will be among student finalists competing next month in the 2021 Poetry Out Loud National Finals.
Lucia enjoys singing and dancing in choral and theatrical productions, playing lacrosse, and acting as president of her school's student council and National Honor Society.
"The Poetry Out Loud program is a unique opportunity for students to show their talents and creativity in poetry recitation. Lucia Walker represents the best and brightest of our state, and the Indiana Arts Commission looks forward to cheering her on in the National Poetry Out Loud competition," said Stephanie Haines, IAC Arts Education and Accessibility Manager.
An archived recording of the 2021 Indiana Poetry Out Loud state finals award ceremony is available online.
As state champion, Lucia will receive a $200 cash prize and her school will receive a $500 stipend to purchase poetry books. Each of Indiana's eight finalists will receive an original Poetry Out Loud screenprint by illustrator Byron Elliott and a signed book of poetry from Indiana's Poet Laureate Matthew Graham.
Students from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, and American Samoa will recite poems on the virtual stage in vying for the title of National Champion. With the title comes a $20,000 prize.
The 2021 Poetry Out Loud National Semifinals will take place on Sunday, May 2, 2021, and the finals will take place on Thursday, May 27, 2021. Both will be video submission-based competitions and will be streamed on arts.gov.