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Maui student wins $ 1,000 grand prize at international arts showcase



Skylar Kuroda – Winner of the Grand Prix for Poetry – International Competition

The Maui County Sister Cities Foundation has announced the list of winners of its local art competition for young people, including Maui contestant Skylar Kuroda, who won the grand prize of $ 1,000 in the Poets Showcase at Sister Cities International Young Artists and Authors Showcase 2021.

The global showcase was open to young artists, photographers, authors and musicians whose works underscored this year’s theme “United in Hope”. The showcase attracted hundreds of participants from around the world and was designed to promote peace through mutual respect, understanding and cooperation – one individual, one community at a time.

Kuroda’s entry was a poem titled “Allied through Adversity”. Kuroda said she tried to tie the general theme and the main message together by showing how people come together under difficult circumstances.

“During any difficult time, especially now with the global pandemic, people are forced to adapt their daily lives and get used to a new routine and a new way of life,” she noted. “In my poem, I have chosen to focus on how people of diverse backgrounds and backgrounds came together in this stressful and uncertain time. Specifically, I have done this by incorporating features and sites unique to certain locations and highlighting personal observations that I have noticed over the past year.

Extract from “Allied through Adversity”:

Across our wide world
People, of various genders and ages, races and dreams, come together
Small island villages nestled under creamy, cerulean skies
To the bigger cities, bubbling with energy
Bombed by an overwhelming and all-consuming fear
From invisible organisms
Attack our physical being
Weakening the bodies, while our spirits are strengthening
Without taking into account the differences,
Welcome new ideas,
Tearing apart the strict mental routine that confined us,
And give up comfortable habits
Into the unpredictable unknown


The winners of the Maui competition, all of whom competed internationally, were:



  • 1st place – Skylar Kuroda (Seabury Hall), “Allies through adversity”
  • 2sd location – Liviana Wilson (Seabury Hall School) “The Need for Peace”
  • 3rd location – Sophia Preiser (Seabury Hall school), “Linda”


  • 1st location – Ragni Zecena Escobar (Maui Waena / Maui High School), “Cascade”
  • 2sd location – Mico Corpuz (Lycée Lahainaluna), Untitled


  • 1st location – Ava Notarangelo, Untitled


  • 1st place – Noah Haas, “Spread Your Love”
  • 2sd location – Ezra Tolbert (Lycée Lahainaluna), “Roads”

To see the visual works of the winners of the Maui contest, visit the Maui County Sister Cities Foundation Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/mauisistercities. Music entries will be added at a later date.

For her world-class grand prize, poetry winner Kuroda received $ 1,000; his essay is also featured on the Sister Cities International website, at https://sistercities.org/2021-yaas/yaas-winners/. Maui winners received Maui County Sister Cities Foundation gift cards: 1st the winners received $ 100; 2sd the seat winners received $ 50 and 3rd the seat winners received $ 25.

The Maui County Sister Cities Foundation is a nonprofit organization that supports the 24 sister and friendly towns of Maui County and one sister chamber. The MCSCF encourages cultural, economic and educational partnerships to promote world peace and mutual understanding. For more information, call 808-242-6762.