Fifteen Bethlehem Central High School students competed in the 6th annual Poetry Out Loud competition on Tuesday, December 13th in the high school cafeteria. The competing students represented 9th through 12th grades. The students recited a poem and were judged on six categories:
- Physical presence
- Voice and articulation
- Dramatic appropriateness
- Evidence of understanding
- Overall performance
Five students advanced to the second round of the competition. Those students were: Bhavyasree Kakarala (Grade 9), Gabriel Martin (Grade 11), Laurel Muench (Grade 9), Xrysanthi Sokaris (Grade 9), and Pamela White (Grade 12).
- Winner: Pamela White (4th straight Poetry Out Loud win)!
- Runner-Up: Laurel Muench
The Poetry Out Loud Regional will be held in Troy this year with dates to be determined. The top contestants from the Regional will be selected to perform at the NYS Poetry Out Loud competition which will be held in New York City in March.
“As always, it was a delightful showing of shared appreciation for the artform of poetry. Our students exhibited a depth of understanding that rivals many Regional competitions I’ve attended,” said Bethlehem Central High School ELA Teacher and Poetry Out Loud coordinator, Andrew Rickert. “I am grateful to our judges, Ms. Edgar, Mr. Hash, Ms. Nigro & Mr. Makely for their time and consideration. On behalf of the ELA Department we congratulate all our contestants and wish Pam and Laurel well at the Regional!”
The following is a list of contestants and the poems they competed with:
- Chloe Bardin (9) “What the Oracle Said” by Shara McCallum
- Jeremy Cintron Ortiz (9) “To have without holding” by Marge Piercy
- Ian Jin (10) “Recess” by Maria Hummel
- Bhavyasree Kakarala (9) “Invisible Children” by Mariana Llanos
- Anika Kalam (10) “April Midnight” by Arthur Symons
- Gabriel Martin (11) “The Properly Scholarly Attitude” by Adelaide Crapsey
- Laurel Muench (9) “Immortal Autumn” by Archibald MacLeish
- Aadi Ojha (10) “Today” by Billy Collins
- Johanna Radcliffe (10) “Caged Bird” by Maya Angelou
- Katie Reynolds (10) “To Be Held” by Linda Hogan
- Eleanor Rose (9) “Siren Song” by Margaret Atwood
- Julia Siegel (10)* “Epitaph” by Katherine Philips
- Xrysanthi Sokaris (9) “Pity the Beautiful” by Dana Gioia
- Pamela White (12) “Cartoon Physics, Pt. 1” by Nick Flynn
- Caleb Yanai (9) “Summer” by Chen Chen
- Bhavyasree Kakarala (9) “Discrimination” by Kenneth Rexroth
- Gabriel Martin (11) “Drowning in Wheat” by John Kinsella
- Laurel Muench (9) “Invictus” by William Ernest Henley
- Xrysanthi Sokaris (9) “All Hallows’ Eve” by Dorthea Tanning
- Pamela White (12) “A Wing and a Prayer” by Beth Ann Fennelly
Congratulations to Pamela, Laurel, and all the contestants!