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Talented Indian American Artists Among 2021 YoungArts Winners


Writer Sarina Patel


LOS ANGELES, CA- At least 19 promising Indian American students are among the 650-plus 2021 YoungArts winners – who comprise the nation’s most accomplished young artists in the visual, literary, design and performing arts – announced by the National YoungArts Foundation.

Selected from a competitive pool of applications and representing artists from across the country, YoungArts winners gain access to one of the most comprehensive programs for emerging artists in the United States, offering financial, professional and artistic development opportunities over the course of their careers.

Winners are chosen for their caliber of artistic achievement by esteemed discipline-specific panels of artists through a rigorous blind adjudication process and are awarded in three categories: finalist, honorable mention and merit.

Finalists are also eligible to be nominated to become a U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts, one of the highest honors given to high school seniors and bestowed by the president of the United States.

This year, YoungArts award winners at all levels receive cash prizes between $100 and $10,000.

These artists are all in the age group of 15 -18 or are in grades 10 to 12.

Indian American talents who have been recognized in the 2021 YoungArts competition include Arushi Avachat (merit, writing/novel); Meera Dasgupta, (merit; writing/spoken word); Noyonika Gupta (merit, voice/popular voice); Sami Khan (merit, photography); Uma Menon (merit, writing/spoken word); Ayush Noori (honorable mention, writing/creative nonfiction); Sarina Patel (finalist, writing/spoken word); Arya Pratap (finalist, dance/world dance/classical Indian); Gayatri Rajan (merit, writing/poetry); Keshav Srinivasan (merit, classical music/violin); Amogh Thakkar (honorable mention, film); Shiv Yajnik (merit, classical music/piano); Advika Krishnan (honorable mention, voice/singer-songwriter); Shreya Ramanathan (honorable mention, dance/world dance/classical Indian); Divyasri Krishnan, (honorable mention, writing/poetry); Raunak Kumar (merit, classical music/violin); Shalini Basu (finalist, dance/world dance/classical Indian); Meghna Das (finalist, voice/popular voice); and Apsara Kasiraman (honorable mention, classical music/composition).

Finalists participated virtually in National YoungArts Week+. From Jan. 3-9, there was a week of virtual classes and workshops with notable artists for 2021 finalists. From Jan. 25-30, the foundation hosted an inspirational virtual showcase of 2021 finalist performances, writers’ readings and an exhibition.

YoungArts award winners become eligible for exclusive creative and professional development support, including a wide range of fellowships, residencies and awards; virtual and in-person presentation opportunities in collaboration with major venues nationwide; additional financial support; and access to YoungArts Post, a free, private digital network for YoungArts artists to connect, collaborate and learn about additional opportunities.

All award winners join a 20,000-strong alumni community, made up of a rich network of peers, and are provided support and opportunities throughout their artistic careers.

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