Maine Poetry Out Loud State Finals: And the winners are.....

  • April 01, 2022

Maine Arts Commission announces Poetry Out Loud State Finals winners

 The art of poetry beamed through the digital airwaves as the Maine Poetry Out Loud competition hosted its second year of virtual recitations. Ten students rose through the ranks of schoolwide and regional contests to compete in the Maine State Final in early March. It is with great pleasure to announce Sofya Lantratova, a senior from George Stevens Academy, is our news state champion. Sofya is now on her way to compete in the virtual National Poetry Out Loud Semifinals competition in May. Colette Carrillo, a senior at Waterville Senior High School, finished runner-up.

For the regional and state finals this year, Maine high school students submitted recorded video recitations that were scored by a panel of judges.

The Maine State Finalists include: Emma Bennett, Baxter Academy of Technology and Science; Emelia Bailey, Westbrook High School; Ogechi Obi, Bangor High School, Sofya Lantratova, George Stevens Academy; Chloe Schueman, Greely High School; Rose Tuttle, Mt. Ararat High School; Brett Palmer, Gardiner Area High School; Julia Ordway, Gorham High School; Colette Carrillo, Waterville Senior High School, Sadie Luehman, Medomak Valley High School.

The Maine State Finals judges were Mihku Paul, Kate Fletcher, Salim Salim, and Todd McKinley.

Sofya, the State Champion, recited Emily Dickinson at The Poetry Slam by Dan Vera, Sonnets from the Portuguese 43: How do I love thee? Let me count the ways by Elizabeth Barrett Browning, and We Lived Happily During the War by Ilya Kaminsky.

All 55 state and jurisdictional finalists will participate in the National Semifinals, which will stream on Sunday, May 1, 2022. The top nine students will advance to the National Finals, which will stream on Sunday, June 5. Both the semifinals and finals will be streamed at

Because students were not able to gather to compete in person, the Maine Arts Commission is partnering with Portland based Media Loma to create a film to celebrate the event and showcase the students’ hard work and talent. The film will include three rounds of student recitation videos, as well as a recitation from Maine’s Poet Laureate, Julia Bouwsma. Former Maine Poetry Out Loud State Champion, Allan Monga, will serve as emcee in the film. The film will be released in the coming weeks.

Maine’s Poetry Out Loud program is organized by the Maine Arts Commission in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation. For more information about Maine Poetry Out Loud, visit or contact Meg Fournier, Interim Director of Media and Performing Arts, Maine Arts Commission at 



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Ryan Leighton

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