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WATCH - Poetry Out Loud: The Virginia Finals

Poetry Out Loud 2022 Winners
Katharina Ravichandran (center) wins the Virginia Poetry Out Loud state finals. Pictured also are first runner-up, Isaiah Riddle (left), and second runner-up Baily Moncure (right).

Earlier this month, Albemarle High School senior, Katharina Ravichandran, competed and won the state title as Virginia’s 2022 Poetry Out Loud champion. VPM presented the competition, Poetry Out Loud: The Virginia Finals, in partnership with the Virginia Commission for the Arts. Richmond’s first poet laureate, Roscoe Burnems, hosted the in-person event from VPM’s studio.

VPM broadcasted the 2022 competition this past Sunday and will replay the one-and-a-half-hour program Thursday, March 31 at 9 PM on VPM PBS PLUS.

This year’s Poetry Out Loud championship featured twelve students from across the Commonwealth who competed for top honors and the opportunity to represent Virginia at the national championships. Semi-finals for the national title will be held on May 1 with the top nine finalists competing on June 5. Both events will be held virtually and will stream live at

As winner, Ravichandran received a $200 cash prize, a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry books at her school, and an opportunity to compete for the top prize of $20,000 in the National Finals.  First runner up, Isaiah Riddle, a senior at Grace Christian School in Staunton, received a $100 cash prize and a $200 stipend for his school.

The National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation sponsors Poetry Out Loud as a means of immersing high school students in the powerful language of poetry. The program provides students an opportunity to master public speaking skills, build self-confidence, and learn about their literary heritage through classical and contemporary works of poetry. 

In addition to watching Poetry Out Loud: The Virginia Finals on VPM PBS PLUS, viewers may stream it anytime on PBS Passport and on the VPM YouTube channel.

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