Congratulations to the winners of the 2016 Poetry Contest!

1st place - "Starry Night" by Albert Zhao, Los Altos High School - 10th grade
2nd place:  "A Room of Art" by Helen Ngueyen, Gunn High School, 12th grade
3rd Place: "Niki Dermartino" by Fabiana Palacios, Mountain View High School, 9th grade 

Albert's poem, as well as the poem from last year's winner Sonnet Phelps will be set to music and performed at the May 20 & 21 concerts "A Celebration of Premieres and Commissions." For more information and tickets, please see the concert web page.

The Schola Cantorum Poetry Contest is a contemporary venture of artistic collaboration and community. It offers an opportunity for young high school poets to collaborate with Music Director Gregory Wait and local composers in an original choral composition.  

Theme: “Hope”

Submission Deadline: 2 December 2016.

Winners Announced: 27 April 2017.

Winning Poem/Song Performed: 20 & 21 May 2017.


  • First:  $500 and your winning poem will be set to original music by a professional composer and arranger.
  • Second:  $300
  • Third:  $200

All prize winners will be included in Schola Cantorum’s press, media and website.

Detailed Contest Rules and Entry Submissions


  • Submissions are free and open to all Mountain View, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Palo Alto, Sunnyvale and Cupertino residents attending 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th grades at the time of submission.
  • Maximum of 3 poems per applicant.  
  • All poems must be in English, be the original work of the author and not have been previously published or won another competition.  Poems may have been part of a school assignment and reviewed by a High School teacher.
  • All poems must have a title and be 20 lines or less (title and spaces between stanzas do not count).
  • All entries must be submitted online only.

Poems are judged by Schola Cantorum Directors and Silicon Valley Community leaders, including local media and poet laureates. 

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