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Arts Academy students receive an unprecedented 358 awards in the 2021 regional Scholastic Art & Writing Awards

This year’s accolades surpass Interlochen’s strong showing in 2020.

Corson Auditorium bears on Interlochen Center for the Arts campus

Students from all seven Interlochen Arts Academy majors netted 358 awards in the 2021 West Michigan division of the regional Scholastic Art & Writing Awards.

Creative Writing students received a total of 191 awards, including 49 Gold Keys, 95 Silver Keys, and 47 Honorable Mentions. Four creative writing students—Sara Carmichael, Ella Harrington, Bianca Layog, and Maia Siegel—also won all five of the region’s American Voices nominations, with Layog receiving two nominations.

Several students from other Academy divisions also received accolades in the regional writing competition. Pianist Miles Zaud earned a Gold Key for his flash fiction piece, “Lost in Work.” Theatre student Mia Yiannias, pianist Elaine See Toh, singer-songwriter Ava Goldfarb, and pianist Haley Gipson won Silver Keys. Dancer Ainsley Sullivan, violinist Jane Finlayson-Fife, filmmaker Tess McNulty, and theatre majors Scout Carter, Chloe Clark, Gilayah McIntosh, and Grace Riedy all received Honorable Mentions.

In the competition’s arts division, 37 visual arts students earned a total of 134 awards, including 47 Gold Keys, 36 Silver Keys, and 51 Honorable Mentions. Film & New Media students Seoyoon Lee, Lindsay Levine, Tess McNulty, and Clara Thurner also received arts awards. Interdisciplinary Artist Betty Ling won six Gold Keys, as well as one of the West Michigan region’s five American Visions nominations.

Founded in 1923, the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards is the nation’s longest-running and most prestigious competition for creative teens. Students in grades 7-12 submit works in 28 different categories of art and writing for consideration for recognition and scholarships. Works are first judged at the regional level, with Gold Key-winning works moving on to the national level of the competition.

All regional award winners are celebrated at ceremonies and exhibitions hosted by the competition’s regional partners. As winners in the West Michigan region, Interlochen Arts Academy’s students have their work included in an online exhibition which will open on Feb. 12, 2021. They will also be eligible to attend the virtual awards ceremony on Sunday, March 6.