From Dani Brown, Arts Education Special Projects Coordinator —
The Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum will be the 2017 host for the statewide Poetry Out Loud (POL) competition in partnership with the Tennessee Arts Commission. Student finalists from across Tennessee will visit the Museum on March 3-4, 2017 to compete for the state champion title.
This national poetry recitation contest begins in the classroom. Schools host their own local competition and then send one victor to compete on the statewide level. Tennessee’s state champion will then proceed to the national POL competition in Washington, D.C. to recite against other champions from across the country.
“An epicenter for all things country music, the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum is one of our state’s greatest assets. With the seamless connection between songwriting and poetry, this partnership will greatly enhance Tennessee’s POL program,” says TN Arts Commission Executive Director Anne B. Pope. “We are helping instill in our young people an appreciation for poetry, as well as providing a platform to build self-confidence and master memorization, performance and public speaking. What better place to demonstrate these skills than in the Museum’s state-of-the-art CMA Theater where many musical legends have taken the stage?”
POL 2017 is presented by The National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation in partnership with the Tennessee Arts Commission and the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. The program seeks to foster the next generation of literary readers by capitalizing on the latest trends in poetry, recitation and performance building on the resurgence of poetry as an oral art form.
Poetry Out Loud Awards
The state champion and his/her teacher will receive cash prizes and an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C. to compete for the national championship. The first runner-up will receive a cash prize and the school will receive a stipend for the purchase of poetry books and supplies. Second and third runners-up will also receive cash prizes. Poetry Out Loud will award a total of $50,000 in cash and school stipends at the National Finals, including a $20,000 award for the Poetry Out Loud National Champion.