‘Dare to Dream’ student wins trip to Monaco

Sophie Kupiec-Weglinski

A 10-year old elementary school student participating in Justin Carr’s Dare to Dream Project won an international art contest, winning a trip to Monaco to attend the 38th International Circus Festival of Monte Carlo.

The contest sponsored by Princess Stephanie of Monaco asked children ages 8-10 from all over the world to make art with circus themes. The winning art was chosen by the princess herself.

Justin Carr’s Dare to Dream Project is a monthly initiative in which Harvard-Westlake students go to Frank D. Parent Elementary School in Inglewood to conduct art classes with school children. LAUSD cut art classes due to budget difficulties.

Justin Carr ’14 planned to start the program after meeting with teachers from the elementary school.

After his death last February, the Dare to Dream Project was founded in his memory.Justin Carr’s mother, Susan, found out about the competition through a friend.

Her friend asked if the Dare to Dream Project would be interested in submitting the artwork of students in the program for Princess Stephanie’s international contest for circus art.

Art teacher Marianne Hall and student volunteers guided the children with their drawing by playing circus music, showing a map of Monaco and bringing other circus-related items.

All the children submitted their work, with Aniya Connor’s chosen to be shown at the festival.

“We all remember her because she was the only student who brought in a tackle box of her own supplies.  When we were cleaning up, I inadvertently grabbed a set of her markers — because they looked just like a set that Justin had.  She politely said, ‘Oh those are mine,’” Susan Carr said.  Her Dad said that she loves to draw.  It was apparent because Princess Stephanie thought this 10-year-old was talented too.”

Connor and two of her family members will travel to attend the festival, which lasts Jan. 17-21. All expenses including airfare, hotel and food will be paid for by the government of Monaco.
“It helps the program, it fulfills Justin’s dream,” Hall said.