GHS Senior Receives 2024 YoungArts Award in Writing for Spoken Word Poetry

Ziyi Yan, a senior at Greenwich High School, has received a 2024 YoungArts award in writing for Spoken Word Poetry.

Ziyi has been recognized for her achievement and joins the most accomplished young visual, literary and performing artists from across the country, heralding the next generation of artists to watch.

YoungArts award winners are selected through a highly competitive application, which is reviewed by panels of discipline-specific artists in a rigorous adjudication process.

This year, winners were selected from more than 9,000 applications across 10 artistic disciplines. As a YoungArts award winner, Ziyi joins a distinguished group of accomplished artists including Daniel Arsham, Terence Blanchard, Camille A. Brown, Timothée Chalamet, Viola Davis, Amanda Gorman, Judith Hill, Jennifer Koh, Tarell Alvin McCraney, Andrew Rannells, Desmond Richardson and Hunter Schafer.

“It is an extraordinary privilege to welcome these brilliant young artists into the YoungArts community,” said YoungArts President Clive Chang. “We’re honored to recognize and encourage these artists at this critical stage in their careers, and we’re looking forward to playing an active, ongoing role in what will no doubt be an incredible artistic journey for each of them.”

In addition to a monetary award of $250, Ziyi is eligible for exclusive creative and professional development support for the duration of her career, including microgrants, financial awards, and presentation opportunities in collaboration with major venues and cultural partners nationwide.

She will also have the opportunity to participate in YoungArts Labs, all-expenses paid learning intensives with field-defining artists working in New York and Los Angeles.

Leading up to the YoungArts competition, Ziyi refined her craft through generative workshops and peer critique at the Iowa Young Writers’ Studio, Adroit Journal Summer Mentorship, and Kenyon Young Writers’ Studio.

Beyond spoken word, Ziyi’s written poetry is published or forthcoming in prestigious international journals such as Poetry Northwest and Rust & Moth. Her work is available at