Winners Announced for the Third Annual Youth Writing Competition at CVRep

Coachella Valley Repertory’s Third Annual Youth Writing Competition honored it’s entrants and semi-finalists at our Awards Ceremony on Sunday, October 16th. The competition is created and sponsored by CVRep Board Member and Season Sponsor, Peggy Jacobs.

Our judges had a tough job this year. We received over forty entries from middle and high school students across the Coachella Valley– from Mecca to Morongo Valley. The best and brightest young writers in the valley wrote poetry, song lyrics, short stories, prose, and informative essays. Conservatory Director, Douglas Sorenson, was the master of ceremonies at the Awards show. Winning entries and notable submissions were read or performed by Conservatory Instructors, Leslie Tinnaro and Craig Wells. Awards and cash prizes were presented in three categories: middle school, high school freshmen and sophomores, and high school juniors and seniors. First, second and third place winners received $500, $250 and $100 respectively. The submissions were judged by award-winning authors and theatre critics Eric Cunningham, Bruce Fessier, and Jim Spalding.


Winners of the Third Annual Writing Competition pose with their awards and competition sponsor, Peggy Jacobs.
Douglas Sorenson poses on stage with Category 3 First Place Winner, Jackson Hendricks.
Douglas Sorenson poses with Category 1 Second Place Winner, Gianni Liverani
CVRep Board Members Hugh Glenn, Peggy Jacobs, and Rob Moon.
Douglas Sorenson poses with Category 3 Third Place Winner, Joshua Alapizco
Douglas Sorenson poses onstage with Category 2 First Place Winner, Ifra Iyoob,.
Craig Wells and Eric Cunningham pose with Category 2 Honorable Mention, Lauren Cruz de Armas
Douglas Sorenson poses with Category 3 Second Place Winner, Maximus Rubalcava
Douglas Sorenson poses on stage with Category 2 Third Place Winner, Kaela Martin


To read the winning submissions, please click here.


First Place: Ashley Torres-Reyes, Toro Canyon Middle School

“Is This The Real Me?,” poetry

Second Place: Gianni Liverani, Palm Desert Charter Middle School

“The Loch in Endless Swirl,” poetry

Third Place: Israel Angulo, Toro Canyon Middle School

“False Hope,” poetry

Honorable Mentions: Kyra Bufanda, Painted Hills Middle School

No title, short story

Melody Ocampo, Painted Hills Middle school

The Origins of Mexico and Its Culture, informative essay


First Place: Ifra Iyoob, Palm Desert High School

Genocides Are Not Just of the Past, informative essay

Second Place: Kyra Entzminger, Shadow Hills High School

“Hunter, Hunted,” short story

Third Place: Kaela Martin, Palm Desert High School

“August,” prose

Honorable Mentions: Lauren Cruz de Armas, La Quinta High School

“I see,” poem

Emily Feffer, Xavier College Preparatory School

“Fairy-Tale Fusion,” short story


First Place: Jackson Hendricks, Shadow Hills High School

“Escapaing Tethoris,” short story

Second Place: Maximus Rubalcava, Shadow Hills High School

“The Forest,” short story

Third Place: Joshua Alapizco, Shadow Hills High School

Song lyrics, no title

Cynthia Ruiz, La Quinta High School

“Dinner Time,” poem

Ivana Rodriguez, Palm Desert High School

“Growing Pains,” poem

Coachella Valley Repertory

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