Poetry Out Loud State Finals held at Huntingdon College
Montgomery, Ala.—The Alabama State Council on the Arts and the Alabama Alliance for Arts Education partnered to host the Alabama State Finals for Poetry Out Loud and the Alabama Original Poetry-Recitation Competition at Huntingdon College, Saturday, February 28. Fifteen high school students competed for the chance to represent Alabama at the national Poetry Out Loud competition in Washington, D.C., April 26–28.
Semi-finalists for the Poetry Out Loud competition included: Daniela Cobb (Booker T. Washington Magnet High School, Montgomery), Sohaila Nikoufar (Loveless Academic Magnet Program High School, Montgomery), Amy Pippin (Loveless Academic Magnet Program High School, Montgomery), Devan Ray (Randolph School, Huntsville), Cadie Simmons (Theodore High School, Theodore), and Emanuel Waddell (Bob Jones High School, Madison). Pippin took first-runner-up honors and Nikoufar won the competition. She will compete for the national title in Washington, D.C. The Alabama Original Poetry-Recitation Competition included 14 participants. Elizabeth Brasseale, a senior from Catholic High School, Montgomery, won the competition with her original poem, “The Glorification of Larks.”
The guest master of ceremonies was Tonya Terry, news anchor for WSFA’s broadcasts Today in Alabama and News at Noon. Terry also hosts her own digital channel broadcast, Talk with Tonya. The event’s special guest was nationally and internationally recognized poet, critical writer, and publisher Sue Brannan Walker. Walker is the publisher of Negative Capability Press, which “Writer’s Digest” recognized in the early 1990s as third in the nation in poetry.
Dr. Jacqueline Allen Trimble, associate professor of English and chair of the Department of Language and Literature at Huntingdon is the Poetry Out Loud coordinator for region 2. Dr. Robin Gunther, assistant professor of English and director of the Huntingdon College Writing Center was a judge for the competition. Jennifer Moody, a Huntingdon senior communication studies major from Springville, Alabama, and an original artist, performed musical interludes throughout Saturday’s events.
Huntingdon College, grounded in the Judeo-Christian tradition of the United Methodist Church, is committed to nurturing growth in faith, wisdom, and service and to graduating individuals prepared to succeed in a rapidly changing world. Founded in 1854, Huntingdon is a coeducational liberal arts college. The College motto, “Enter to grow in wisdom; go forth to apply wisdom in service,” is inscribed in stone above the front door of John Jefferson Flowers Hall. Celebrating its centennial year in Montgomery this year, the campus is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.