Thursday, March 19, 2020

Poetry Out Loud State Finals Last Week Switch to Videos To Judge Contestants

Noah Bunting, resident of Jackson and a senior from Amador High School, is the Amador County Poetry Out Loud Champion for 2020.  He was awarded this prestigious title after rigorous competitions locally last month, and it was his second time at being selected to represent Amador County.

The next step for Bunting was competing in-person just a week ago against all the other 52 county winners. It would have meant a trip to Sacramento as in all previous years, but due to the COVID-19 issue, each contestant was asked at the last minute to submit videos of their three recitations. With assistance from his coaches Mr. Giles Turner and Meghan O’Keefe, Bunting’s video was submitted after a 6 hour day of filming, along with help from volunteer "stagehand"  Betzaida Arroyo.

Alas, another high school contestant (from Sacramento County) was selected for the California Poetry Out Loud (POL) title, but the experience for Noah was His poems for POL 2020: 1.) The Emperor of Ice Cream by Wallace Stevens; 2.) The Conqueror Worm by Edgar Allan Poe; 3.) 1969 by Alex Dimitrov.


"1969" by Alex Dimitrov

"The Conquering Worm" by Edgar Allen Poe

"The Emperor of Ice Cream" by Wallace Stevens

The POL curriculum teaches literary arts, memorization, and public speaking skills through competitive recitation of notable poems from the official Poetry Out Loud Anthology. All high school students in Amador County are eligible to participate in this program offered for free by the Amador County Arts Council. The program is an initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation, administered by the California Arts Council, and locally by the Amador County Arts Council.

The California Poetry Out Loud is the largest event of its kind in the U.S.: 53 counties, 282 schools and 769 teachers, reaching nearly 56,000 students statewide. 

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