Poetry Out Loud is a national poetry recitation contest for high school students that begins in the classroom, includes statewide competitions, like the Arizona competition airing on Arizona PBS, and culminates with the Poetry Out Loud National Finals in Washington D.C. By inviting the dynamic aspects of slam poetry, spoken word and theater into the English class, Poetry Out Loud encourages the nation’s youth to learn about great poetry by studying, memorizing and performing some of the most influential and timeless poems of the English language. Through Poetry Out Loud, students can master public speaking skills, build self-confidence and learn about their literary heritage.
The inspiration for this program is to promote poetry in both the classroom and the community. Poetry Out Loud provides an entry point for many students to learn to love poetry and own their favorite poems for a lifetime. A program of the National Endowment for the Arts and The Poetry Foundation, Poetry Out Loud is administered in all 50 states and three territories through partnerships with state arts agencies.
Poetry Out Loud in Arizona:
Participation in Arizona Poetry Out Loud continues to grow with over 13,000 students and 160 teachers from across the state participating in the program this year. The winner of the 2016 Arizona Poetry Out Loud State Finals received $200 and the winner’s school library received a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry books. The second place finalist received $100, with $200 for his or her school library.
In addition, the Arizona Poetry Out Loud State Champion will receive an all-expenses-paid trip (with a chaperone) to compete at the National Finals in Washington D.C. The Poetry Out Loud National Finals will award a total of $50,000 in scholarships and school stipends, with a $20,000 college scholarship for the Poetry Out Loud National Champion.
The Arizona Poetry Out Loud program is managed and supported by the Arizona Commission on the Arts.
Arizona PBS is broadcasting highlights of the Arizona state finals of the Poetry Out Loud competition, airing Friday, April 7 at 9:30 pm on 8.1. An Arizona PBS original production made possible by the Arizona Commission on the Arts, an agency of the State of Arizona.