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2019 Poetry Out Loud National Champion Announced

The  Poetry Out Loud National Final concluded in Washington, D.C. on May 2nd, 2019. Minnesota’s Isabella Callery (Anishinaabe), a senior at Arcadia Charter School, received top honors and won a $20,000 prize. She recited poems by Joy Harjo, Natalie Diaz, and Charles Lamb. Second place went to Illinois’ own Scottlynn Ernestine Ballard. She is a junior at Edwardsville Senior High School. Georgia’s Alejandro J. Campo, a junior at Flowery Branch High School, won third.

More than 275,000 students across the nation participated in this year’s Poetry Out Loud competition. The competition started in the classroom, then moved forward to school, regional, and state competitions.  Champions from all fifty states as well as Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, and  District of Columbia  participated in the national final.

The Poetry Out Loud national finals are administered by Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation.

Poetry Out Loud is a partnership of National Endowment for the Arts, Poetry Foundation, Illinois Arts Council Agency and other state arts agencies. Since 2005, 3.8 million students from 16,000 high schools nationwide have participated in this program.

By |2019-05-14T15:06:42-05:00May 13th, 2019|News|Comments Off on 2019 Poetry Out Loud National Champion Announced

Arts Council Announces Annual Grants for Non-profit Organizations and Individual Artists

The Springfield Area Arts Council announces the opening of its fiscal year 2019 City Arts competitive grant program.  Non-profit organizations, those working with individual performing and visual artists, and performing and visual arts organizations are invited to apply for funding to support projects in a number of categories.  All must operate in either Sangamon or Menard County.

Also available are Rosie Richmond Artist Advancement Awards.  These grants will be awarded to individuals who work in the fields of Music, Music Composition, Literature, and Playwriting / Screenwriting.

Projects must have occurred after October 1, 2018, or will be completed before September 1, 2019.  Specific guidelines and applications for the City Arts and Artist Advancement grant programs may be downloaded by visiting the Arts Council website at www.springfieldartsco.org or by calling 217-753-3519 or e-mailing programs@springfieldartsco.org.

Applications must be hand-delivered before 5:00 p.m., on Monday, April 15, 2019, or must be postmarked by April 15, 2019, to be considered for funding during fiscal year 2019.

Funds for the City Arts program are received from the City of Springfield.  The Springfield Area Arts Council enhances the quality of life in its geographic focus area and enriches the community as a result through its programs and activities scheduled throughout the year.  Its grant programs provide critically-needed funds to assist organizations in fulfilling their missions and to support the professional development of artists in the area.

By |2019-04-01T13:50:20-05:00April 1st, 2019|News|Comments Off on Arts Council Announces Annual Grants for Non-profit Organizations and Individual Artists

The Springfield Area Arts Council Announces Winners of the Poetry Out Loud Illinois State Contest

Committed to Words and Memory

THE SPRINGFIELD AREA ARTS COUNCIL ANNOUNCES

ILLINOIS STATE WINNERS

 

“Poetry is a life-cherishing force.  For poems are not words, after all, but fires for the cold,

ropes let down to the lost, something as necessary as bread in the pockets of the hungry.”

These lines from Mary Oliver were written in the program for the Illinois State Contest of the Poetry Out Loud: National Recitation Contest.  The competition was held on Friday, March 8, 2019, at the Hoogland Center for the Arts in Springfield.   Scottlynn Ballard from Edwardsville Senior High School (Edwardsville) was declared the winner.  She will advance to the national competition in Washington, D.C., in late April.

To win the competition, Scottlynn recited “Worth” by Marilyn Nelson, “Self-Help” by Michael Ryan, and “Ode” by Arthur O’Shaunessy.

Alyssa Argent, William Howard Taft High School (Chicago), was named runner-up.  Rounding out the top five were Nico Chiligiris (Central High School, Champaign), Charles Hsu (Deerfield High School, Deerfield), and Bushra Khan (Maine East High School, Park Ridge).

The Illinois State Contest featured recitations by two students from each of eight Poetry Out Loud regional contests in the state:  Belleville, Carbondale, Champaign, Chicago-City, Chicago-Metro, Rockford, Rock Island, and Springfield.

Other students participating from around the state:

Cassandra Bradbury, Pawnee High School (Pawnee)

Isabella Brown, Edwardsville High School (Edwardsville)

Kenzie Clerk, Carbondale Community High School (Carbondale)

Stephanie Collis, Orion High School (Orion)

Regan Cook, Bureau Valley High School (Manlius)

Nanette Nkolomoni, Mather High School (Chicago)

Kylie Rauch, Clay City  High School (Clay City)

Grace Sturtewagen, Annawan High School (Annawan)

Paige Twidell, Bureau Valley High School (Manlius)

Cole White, Pawnee High School (Pawnee)

Ian Wilkey, Central High School (Champaign)

Contest staff for the 2019 Illinois State Contest included

Recitation Judges:

Karen Hunter Anderson, Rochester – educational administrator and writer

Kayem, Chicago – poet and performer

Jim O’Brien, St. Joseph – poet and poetry workshop leader

Amy Sayre Baptista, Springfield and Chicago – poet and community arts organizer

Accuracy Judge: Théa Chesley, Springfield – poet and librarian

Prompter: Laura Sievert, Quincy – arts administrator

Scorekeeper: Bob Jessup

M.C. : Jim Leach

Special guest at the contest was Justine Haka, program manager at the Poetry Foundation in Chicago, Illinois.

Poetry Out Loud in Illinois is a collaborative project of the Illinois Arts Council Agency and seven arts agencies, each of which hosts a regional contest.  The Poetry Out Loud:  National Recitation Contest is a national program that encourages high school students to learn about great poetry through analysis, memorization, performance, and competition.  The National Endowment for the Arts and The Poetry Foundation, in conjunction with state arts agencies, support this nation-wide program with participants from all fifty states plus Washington, D.C., the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico.

In Illinois this year, 45 high schools were part of Poetry Out Loud.  249 teachers.  More than 11,000 students.

“Among the benefits of the Poetry Out Loud program is that it helps young women and men find something they’re good at.  These students are so talented and insightful,” said Sheila Walk, contest organizer, during the post-contest reception, “and they are so supportive of one another.”

More information is available at www.poetryoutloud.org or from the Springfield Area Arts Council (programs@springfieldartsco.org).

Photograph of Scottlynn Ballard and Justine Haka

William Richards, photographer

Award designed by Jensine Williams

By |2019-03-10T13:10:48-05:00March 10th, 2019|News|Comments Off on The Springfield Area Arts Council Announces Winners of the Poetry Out Loud Illinois State Contest

Poetry Out Loud Central Illinois Regional Winners

POETRY OUT LOUD:  NATIONAL RECITATION CONTEST

THE SPRINGFIELD AREA ARTS COUNCIL ANNOUNCES

CENTRAL ILLINOIS REGIONAL WINNERS

 

In the temper and the tantrum, in the well-kept arboretum

I am waiting, like an animal,

For poetry.

From “That Everything’s Inevitable” by Katy Lederer

 

These words, recited by Aasne Daniels (mistress of ceremonies), were heard by about 100 people gathered for the Central Illinois POETRY OUT LOUD Contest held on Wednesday, February 13, 2019, at the Hoogland Center for the Arts in Springfield.

Cassandra Bradbury and Cole White of Pawnee High School were the top two finishers in the competition.  They will advance to the Illinois State Finals in Springfield at the Hoogland Center for the Arts on Friday, March 8, 2019, at 10:00 A.M.

Springfield Southeast High School’s Sara Kennedy was named as an alternate.

The Illinois State Contest will feature recitations by two students from each of eight Poetry Out Loud regions in the state:  Alton, Carbondale, Champaign, Chicago-City, Chicago-Suburbs, Rockford, Rock Island, and Springfield.  The Illinois State Champion will advance to the national contest in Washington, D.C., in late April.

Over 1,395 students and 35 teachers began the 2019 Poetry Out Loud season in central Illinois last fall.  Today, 18 students competed.

Other contestants in the Central Illinois Regional Contest were

Khadija Dear and Ella Smith, Eisenhower High School (Decatur)

Genna Nielsen and Danielle Rogers, Eureka High School (Eureka)

Bethany Bergschneider and Madden Delaney, Franklin High School (Franklin)

Grace Henderson, Lutheran High School (Springfield)

Emma Halteman and Jamie Hefley, Rochester High School (Rochester)

Claire Carter and Ruthie Kinion, Sacred Heart-Griffin High School (Springfield)

Ian Unsbee, Southeast High School (Springfield)

Joy Brown, Springfield High School (Springfield)

Claire Bushur and Tory Tensen, Teutopolis High School (Teutopolis)

Contest staff for the 2019 Central Illinois Regional Contest included

Recitation judges:  Anne Bishoff, Reggie Guyton, Nikki Overcash

Accuracy judge:  Thèa Chesley

Prompter:  Jerry Johnson

Poetry Out Loud in Illinois is a collaborative project of the Illinois Arts Council Agency and seven arts agencies, each of which hosts a regional contest.  The Poetry Out Loud:  National Recitation Contest is a national program that encourages high school students to learn about great poetry through analysis, memorization, performance, and competition.  The National Endowment for the Arts and The Poetry Foundation, in conjunction with state arts agencies, support this nation-wide program with participants from all fifty states plus Washington, D.C., the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico.

More information is available at www.poetryoutloud.org.

Cassandra Bradbury, champion, and Courtney Wick, Arts Council board president

(Credit – William Richards)

By |2019-02-17T15:05:26-05:00February 17th, 2019|News|Comments Off on Poetry Out Loud Central Illinois Regional Winners

Press Release: Poetry Out Loud 2019 Regional Competition

For immediate release                                                                                                               Contact: Sheila Walk

February 4, 2019                                                                                                                                217-753-3519

In the temper and the tantrum, in the well-kept arboretum

I am waiting, like an animal,

For poetry.

By Katy Lederer, “That Everything’s Inevitable” from The Heaven-Sent Leaf (2008)

The Springfield Area Arts Council will host the Poetry Out Loud Central Illinois Regional Contest on Wednesday, February 13, at 4:00 P.M. in Theatre Three at the Hoogland Center for the Arts.  There is no admission cost, and all are welcome.

Poetry Out Loud is a national contest in which students test their skills of oration and interpretation through poetry.  Created by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation, Poetry Out Loud is administered in partnership with the state arts agencies of all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U. S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico.  Since the pilot program in 2005, more than 3,000,000 students, 10,000 high schools, and 50,000 teachers have participated in Poetry Out Loud nationwide.  [Source:  National Endowment for the Arts]

In Poetry Out Loud, teenagers select, analyze, and commit to memory classic and contemporary poems for recitation.  Beginning at the classroom level, winners advance to a school-wide competition, then to one of eight regional competitions in Illinois, then to the state tournament, and ultimately to the national finals in Washington, D. C.

The Springfield Area Arts Council partners with the Illinois Arts Council Agency to bring this program to central Illinois.  This year, 11 area high schools, 35 teachers, and 1,395 students are participating.

PARTICIPATING SCHOOLS

Decatur:  Eisenhower High School

Eureka:  Eureka High School

Franklin:  Franklin High School

Pawnee:  Pawnee High School

Peoria:  Quest Charter Academy

Rochester:  Rochester High School

Springfield:  Lutheran High School; Sacred Heart-Griffin High School; Southeast High School; Springfield High School

Teutopolis:  Teutopolis Community High School

By |2019-02-10T22:20:38-05:00February 10th, 2019|News, Uncategorized|Comments Off on Press Release: Poetry Out Loud 2019 Regional Competition
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