2020-04-02: NH’s 2020 Poetry Out Loud Champion named; Competition adapts to COVID-192020-04-02T12:47:36-04:00


Shelly Angers, N.H. Department of Natural & Cultural Resources
Twitter: @NHDNCR

NH’s 2020 Poetry Out Loud Champion named;
Competition adapts to COVID-19

The N.H. State Council on the Arts has announced that Sydney Kilgore from Concord High School is the winner of New Hampshire’s 2020 Poetry Out Loud High School Championship. Adyant Shankar from Nashua South High School was selected as alternate champion.

Traditionally held at Representatives’ Hall at the State House before an audience, this year’s state competition made adaptations due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Finalists submitted videos of their recitations, which were then scored by the panel of judges using the same criteria that are used during in-person competitions.As state champion, Kilgore receives $200 and her high school receives a $500 stipend for the purchase of poetry books. Shankar will receive $100, with an additional $200 stipend for his school library.

Traditionally, winners also receive an all-expenses-paid trip with an adult chaperone to Washington, D.C., to compete for the national championship, with the runner-up as substitute. This year’s national championship has been canceled.

More than 9,000 New Hampshire students from 40 high schools and school groups participated in this year’s program. Competitions began at the classroom level, advanced to school championships and then regional semi-finals in the weeks before the state championship.

Led in New Hampshire by the N.H. State Council on the Arts, Poetry Out Loud is a partnership of the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation.

New Hampshire’s Poetry Out Loud supporters include the New Hampshire Learning Initiative and the Putnam Foundation – a donor-advised fund of the N.H. Charitable Foundation. Other partners include Brightspot Consultants, New Hampshire Public Radio, the Poetry Society of New Hampshire, the New Hampshire Writers Project, Slam Free or Die, the Frost Place and Granite State Ambassadors.

To learn more about 2020 New Hampshire Poetry Out Loud, visit nh.gov/nharts and click on the Poetry Out Loud button.

The New Hampshire State Council on the Arts is a division of the New Hampshire Department of Natural and Cultural Resources. It began in 1965 with legislation designed “to insure that the role of the arts in the life of our communities will continue to grow and play an ever more significant part in the education and welfare of our citizens.” Funding for programs is provided through state appropriations, a partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Conservation License Plate fund. Learn more about the New Hampshire State Council on the Arts at nh.gov/nharts.