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Gadalla, Adams tops in Poetry Out Loud

Poetry Out Loud contestants at Bob Jones High School were Jasmine Atassi, front from left, Katherine Cota-Robles, Jessica Sloan, Iman Gadalla, Meenu Bhooshanan, Lael Anderson and Marielle Baumgartner. Shantanu Kadam, back from left, Preston Adams, Carsten Grove, Isabella Guerra, Michael Nichols, Grace Poehlman, Grey Vandeberg, Elijah Johnson, Alex Meyer, Caleb Lawson and Isabella Brengman. CONTRIBUTED
Poetry Out Loud contestants at Bob Jones High School were Jasmine Atassi, front from left, Katherine Cota-Robles, Jessica Sloan, Iman Gadalla, Meenu Bhooshanan, Lael Anderson and Marielle Baumgartner. Shantanu Kadam, back from left, Preston Adams, Carsten Grove, Isabella Guerra, Michael Nichols, Grace Poehlman, Grey Vandeberg, Elijah Johnson, Alex Meyer, Caleb Lawson and Isabella Brengman. CONTRIBUTED
MADISON – Verse, meter and mood took precedence at Bob Jones High School for Poetry Out Loud, a school-wide poetry competition.
National Endowment for the Arts and The Poetry Foundation founded Poetry Out Loud, a national recitation contest. In Alabama, the Alabama State Council on the Arts administers the contest.
Competition begins at the classroom level. Winners then advance to compete in a contest for all grades at a school.
About 20 students and their families, administrators and teachers gathered in the Bob Jones Media Center on Oct. 20 for the presentations of poems and free verse, Poetry Out Loud Sponsor Sheila Hadden said. Hadden also teaches freshman composition and ACT preparation courses.
“After each student recited one poem, the field was narrowed to the top five recitations, and those students went on to recite a second poem,” Hadden said. “Students were judged on physical presence, voice and evidence of understanding among other criteria.”
Judges were Dr. Colleen Weir, Dr. Kevin Dupre, Bethany Campbell and Brad Hadden. After judges evaluated each contestant, they tallied the evaluations and announced the winners.
Iman Gadalla was the winner for recitation. Jessica Sloan earned first runner-up for recitation.
Preston Adams took top honors for “Original Poem.” Carsten Grove was first runner-up in this category.
Each winner received $100, and each first runner-up received $50. Gadalla, Adams and Grove will advance to regional competition on Nov. 18 at Chen Auditorium at the University of Alabama in Huntsville. Winners at UAH will qualify for the state finals in Montgomery in February 2017.
Winners at each level win prize money. The winner in recitation at the state level will go on to compete at the national level in Washington D.C. with up to $50,000 in scholarship money available in awards.
Other students who entered Poetry Out Loud at Bob Jones were Lael Anderson, Jasmine Atassi, Marielle Baumgartner, Meenu Bhooshanan, Isabella Brengman, Katherine Cota-Robles, Isabella Guerra, Elijah Johnson, Shantanu Kadam, Caleb Lawson, Alex Meyer, Michael Nichols, Grace Poehlman, Jessica Sloan and Grey Vandeberg.

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