Eight competitors reach S.C. Poetry Out Loud finals
State finals to be held virtually March 5
for immediate release
COLUMBIA, S.C. – From among statewide submissions, judges selected eight finalists who now have a chance to represent South Carolina this spring in the national finals of Poetry Out Loud—an annual, nationwide recitation contest.
The South Carolina Arts Commission
(SCAC) coordinates Poetry Out Loud South Carolina
(POLSC), partnering with the National Endowment for the Arts
and the Poetry Foundation
to bring the competition to the state’s high schools. The program seeks to foster the next generation of literary readers by capitalizing on the latest trends in poetry—recitation and performance.
POLSC Coordinator Bonita Peeples
once again arranged a 2021/2022 competition with a virtual structure. The first step, now complete, was inviting students in grades 9-12 to submit videos to twin regional competitions, each with its own set of different judges.
Both regionals yielded four finalists to compete in the competition’s next step: virtual state finals on Saturday, March 5, 2022. The eight finalists come from four schools in Charleston, Greenville, and Spartanburg. Students from Region 1, roughly the lower half of the state, all come from Charleston County School of the Arts. They are:
- Tea Allen
- Kenneth Carrington
- Natalie Holland
- Adam Maierle
Finalists from Region 2, which is roughly the upper half of the state, represent three schools. The students are:
- Emily Allison, 2021 state champion (Fine Arts Center of Greenville)
- Harper Scott (Fine Arts Center of Greenville)
- Catherine Wooten (Westgate Christian School of Spartanburg)
- Caleb Xiao, 2021 first runner-up (Spartanburg Day School in Boiling Springs)
Adjudicating the virtual finals will be veteran Poetry Out Loud judges Al Black
, Dr. Ray McManus
, Michelle Reese
, and Kimberly J. Simms
. Each is an accomplished poet residing in South Carolina dedicated to training the next generation of poets. Each finalist will meet virtually to record three one-take recitations with Peeples and a prompter. The judges will review the recitations and determine a state champion and first runner-up.
The state finals champion will receive a $200 prize and get to represent South Carolina in the national finals competition for the chance to win a $20,000 first prize. Cancelled in 2020 with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the national finals returned virtually in 2021 and will be virtual again in 2022. Find out more about the national competition here
About the South Carolina Arts Commission
The mission of the South Carolina Arts Commission (SCAC) is to promote equitable access to the arts and support the cultivation of creativity in South Carolina. We envision a South Carolina where the arts are valued and all people benefit from a variety of creative experiences.
A state agency created by the South Carolina General Assembly in 1967, the SCAC works to increase public participation in the arts by providing grants, direct programs, staff assistance and partnerships in four areas: arts learning, community and traditional arts, artist development, and arts industry. Headquartered in Columbia, S.C., the SCAC is funded by the state of South Carolina, by the federal government through the National Endowment for the Arts, and other sources. Visit SouthCarolinaArts.com
or call 803.734.8696, and follow @scartscomm on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for #Arts4SC and #SCartists content.
SCAC grant makes chamber orchestra performance possible
On Thursday, Feb. 10, 2022 the Charleston County School of the Arts Sinfonietta will perform with virtuoso violinist Francisco Fullana at the College of Charleston Sottile Theatre.
The performance is the culmination of a three-day residency between Fullana and the SOA Sinfonietta, a part of Chamber Music Charleston’s Youth Chamber Music Initiative. A South Carolina Arts Commission Arts Education Project Grant
helped make this performance possible.
Fullana will lead the ensemble in a performances of the Elgar Serenade for String Orchestra the J.S. Bach Violin Concerto in D minor. Fullana will also perform alongside soloists from the SOA Sinfonietta: Elaina Gable
(violin), Yosef Chang
(viola) and Devon O’Brien
(bass) for Mozart’s Serenade in D Major, “Serenata notturna.”
In addition to the SOA residency, Chamber Music Charleston’s Youth Chamber Music Initiative includes:
- Classical Kids Concerts in elementary schools,
- masterclasses with visiting guest artists,
- and the CMC TWO High School string chamber music program.
The residency between violinist Francisco Fullana and the Charleston County School of the Arts was inspired by Fullana’s work with youth orchestras and music schools throughout the world.
“Each year we attract world-renowned guest artists to perform alongside our professional musicians of Chamber Music Charleston for our Ovation Concerts, and we are excited to expand this opportunity for guest artist to work with the accomplished string students at SOA,” President and Artistic Director of Chamber Music Charleston Sandra Nikolajevs said. “Providing the students with the change to not only hear an artist of the caliber of Francisco Fullana, but to work with him closely in exploring the music of Mozart, Bach and Elgar over the course of three days, will create an incredible experience for the students and audience alike.”
Spanish-born violinist Francisco Fullana, winner of the 2018 Avery Fisher Career Grant, is making a name for himself as both a performer and a leader of innovative educational institutions. As a soloist, he has performed the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto with the Bayerische Philharmonie led by the late Sir Colin Davis, the Sibelius Concerto with the Münchner Rundfunkorchester
, and the Brahms Violin Concerto with Venezuela’s Teresa Carreño Orchestra under the baton of Gustavo Dudamel. In March he will perform as soloist for Vivaldi’s Four Seasons
in New York City’s Carnegie Hall with the Grammy-Award winning ensemble Apollo’s Fire.
“Through my formative years at Juilliard and beyond, I realized that experiences centered on active learning and collaborations with world class musicians exponentially accelerated my learning process and were life-changing,” he said. “By working with students as equal collaborators, one can lead the creative process through a collective effort that has transformative long-term effects in students’ artistic development.”
The Charleston County School of the Arts is a public middle and high school that offers students rich and intensive instruction in eight art majors in middle school and nine art majors in high school. Students may apply and audition for two areas, and once accepted into a major, spend one-fourth of their day with dynamic teachers in that art area. Art majors include instrumental band, creative writing, dance, piano, string orchestra, theater, visual art and vocal music. SOA’s students excel at the local, state and national level, earning awards, scholarships, and the respect of audience members, peers, and patrons of the arts.
Students also participate in an appropriately challenging academic curriculum that includes college preparatory, honors, and Advanced Placement courses. Clubs, community service, and unique school events tailored to meet the interests of young artists, provide additional opportunities for expression and involvement. We want our students to maximize their potential and then find out how their art can impact the world around them.
This program is funded in part by the South Carolina Arts Commission which receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts.
About the performances
Thursday, February 10, 2022 at 7 p.m. College of Charleston Sottile Theatre, 44 George St. Tickets: Free with advance reservation required.
Six SC students participating in National YoungArts Week in Miami
This week 166 of the nation's most promising young artists in the literary, visual, design and performing arts will converge in Miami, Fla., for the 36th Annual National YoungArts Week. These students were chosen as finalists in the YoungArts Competition held in the fall. South Carolina had six finalists from four high schools.
Julia Dotson, from the Charleston County School of the Arts, is a finalist in the Design Arts category. Amber Magnuson, from the Fine Arts Center in Greenville, is a finalist in the Poetry category. Jessica McCallum, from D.W. Daniel High School, is a finalist in the Cinematic Arts category. Samuel Gee and Jamiya Leach are finalists in the Creative Non-Fiction category and are students at the S.C. Governor's School for the Arts and Humanities (SCGSAH), and Cam'Ron Stewart, also from the Governor's School, is a finalist in the Spoken Theater category.
During National YoungArts Week, students take master classes and workshops from internationally recognized professionals and compete for higher honors, while enhancing their artistic development.
In total, South Carolina had 13 winners, including the six finalists. While only the finalists participate in YoungArts Week, all competition winners become part of a professional network of over 20,000 alumni artists and are eligible to participate in YoungArts' regional programs as well as nominations as a U.S. Presidential Scholar of the Arts.
Additional South Carolina winners are Governor's School students Joshua Simpson (Spoken Theater), James Stevens (Baritone), Helen Coats (Creative Non-Fiction), Alyssa Mazzoli (Short Story), and Aidan Forster (Short Story); Richland Two Charter High School student Kierra Gray (Singer/Songwriter); and Clover High School student Derrick Ostolaza (Cinematic Arts).
"The YoungArts Competition is one of the most competitive opportunities in the nation for students exhibiting artistic excellence, with over 8,000 submissions from 42 states," said Dr. Cedric Adderley, SCGSAH president. "We're very proud that eight of the winners came from the Governor's School, as this is an esteemed accomplishment for our students, our schools and our state."
Image: The Upstate's five YoungArts Competition finalists at the Atlanta airport on their way to Miami. Pictured left to right: Samuel Gee, Jessica McCallum, Amber Magnusum, Jamiya Leach, and Cam'Ron Stewart.
Via: Governor's School for the Arts and Humanities
Charleston student repeats as Poetry Out Loud champion
Nicole Sadek, a senior at Charleston County School of the Arts, has been crowned the 2016 South Carolina Poetry Out Loud state champion, recapturing the title she first won in 2014. Sadek now advances to the national finals May 2-4 in Washington, D.C., where she competes for a $20,000 scholarship. Sadek is the first student to win two state titles in the history of the South Carolina program.
Sadek was one of nine regional finalists who competed at the Columbia Museum of Art during the state finals on March 12. Each recited two poems they had memorized and perfected during school-wide and regional competitions that took place throughout the state from October to January, when more than 4,000 students began the competition. Three students were named state finalists and recited a third poem to determine the winner.
As the state champion, Sadek receives $200 and an all-expense paid trip to compete in the national finals. The Charleston County School of the Arts library also receives a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry books.
Competition judges were Dr. Dianne "Dinah" Johnson, author and professor of English at the University of South Carolina; author and Poet Laureate for the city of Columbia Ed Madden, associate professor of English at USC; Darion McCloud, founder and creative director of the NiA Theatre Company and Story Squad; and Theresa (T.J.) Wallace, assistant director at South Carolina Humanities.
The South Carolina Arts Commission works with several partners to produce Poetry Out Loud. Statewide partners are the Columbia Museum of Art and the "Speaking of Schools" radio program, hosted by Doug Keel and supported by the South Carolina Department of Education. Regional partners are Hub City Writers Project (Region 1); Bravo Blythewood Cultural Arts Council and the South Carolina Center for Oral Narrative at the University of South Carolina Sumter (Region 2); and the College of Charleston School of Humanities and Social Sciences, the Lowcountry Initiative for the Literary Arts and the South Carolina Poetry Society (Region 3).
Poetry Out Loud, a program created in 2005 by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation, encourages the nation's youth to learn about great poetry through exploration, memorization and recitation. Students master public speaking skills, build self-confidence and learn about their literary heritage while gaining an appreciation of poetry. Last year more than 365,000 students nationwide competed.
Poetry Out Loud journey inspires Charleston County student
Poetry Out Loud state champion Katherine Murchison reflects on her experience and competing at the national contest.
On March 16, the South Carolina Arts Commission announced that I was the South Carolina state champion for the Poetry Out Loud: National Recitation Contest.
The next month, I advanced to the Poetry Out Loud National Finals, which took place from April 29-30 in Washington, D.C., to compete with 53 other representatives for a chance to win a $20,000 scholarship. Nation-wide, more than 4,000 students began the competition, and 53 remained.
I competed with nine regional finalists at the Columbia Museum of Art for my position. We all recited two poems we had memorized for months through school-wide and regional contests. Three students, including myself, were named state finalists and recited a third poem in order to determine the winner.
Here, Justin Fox, a Spartanburg High School senior, was named state runner-up and Kynnedi McManus, a Strom Thurmond High School senior from Edgefield County came in third.
As the state champion, I received $200 and an all-expenses paid trip for me and a chaperone to compete in the national finals.
The Charleston County School of the Arts, the high school I attend, received a $500 stipend to purchase poetry books.
More importantly however, throughout this entire process I have been exposed to a multitude of poets and passionate literary students just like me.
Read the rest of Katherine's report.
Via: Moultrie News
Charleston student named state Poetry Out Loud champion
Congratulations to Katherine Murchison, a junior at Charleston County School of the Arts, who was named South Carolina champion for the Poetry Out Loud: National Recitation Contest on March 16. Murchison now advances to the Poetry Out Loud National Finals to represent South Carolina and take her shot at a $20,000 scholarship. The national finals take place April 29-30 in Washington, D.C.
As the state champion, Murchison receives $200 and an all-expense paid trip to compete in the national finals. The Charleston County School of the Arts library also receives a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry books.
Murchison was one of nine regional finalists who competed at the Columbia Museum of Art during state finals. Each recited two poems they had memorized and perfected during school-wide and regional competitions that took place throughout the state from October to January, when more than 4,000 students began the competition.
Justin Fox, (pictured below right) a senior at Spartanburg High School, was named state runner-up. He receives $100, and his school library receives a $200 poetry book stipend.
Read more about the Poetry Out Loud state finals.