McFetridge wins Greely Poetry Out Loud Competition


Sophomores Quincy Segal and Eyezaya McFetridge and junior Katlyn Guay

Eli Sherr and Schuyler Wetmore

On Jan. 6th, Greely crowned a new Poetry Out Loud champion, sophomore Eyezaya McFetridge.  The competition between 11 students took place in the Greely Center for the Arts during periods 1 and 2.  Many teachers took their classes to the event so students could watch their peers compete.

It was a close contest because McFetridge only beat sophomore Quincy Segal by a single point.  Junior Kaitlyn Guay, the former champion, came in 3rd.

 According to the Poetry Out Loud website, poetry out loud helps students “master public speaking skills, build self-confidence, and learn about literary history and contemporary life.”

Over the years the event has grown in popularity.  Today it reaches “nearly 3.5 million students and 50,000 teachers from 10,000 schools across the country.”

English teacher Joan Guild organized the event. English teachers Barry Mothes, Hannah Burroughs, Bobby Livingston, Jackie Young, and Leslie McKenney were judges and English teacher Katie Dexter hosted the event

While scoring the performances, the judges take into consideration physical presence, voice and articulation, dramatic appropriateness, level of difficulty, overall performance, and accuracy.

The poems McFetridge chose to perform were “What I Learned From The Incredible Hulk” by Aimee Nezhukumatathil and “Ode to the Midwest” by Kevin Young.

According to the judges, students benefit by reading poems they connect with.

Judge Jackie Young said students should “pick a poem that reflects [their] personality and find interesting to deliver.  That can be an advantage.”

Judge Barry Mothes thought McFetridge chose poems that allowed him to show off his recitation talents.

“He did a good job of choosing poems that suited his interests, voice, and interest in things around him.  That can really stand out,” Mothes said.

McFetridge will go on to the Southern Maine Regional Finals which will be held at the Westbrook Middle School Performing Arts Center on February 10, at 3:00 p.m. The State Finals will be held on March 2nd, and nationals will be April 28-29 in Washington D.C.  The winner from Maine will receive $200 and an all-expenses paid trip to Washington D.C.

Fritz Kendall, Sara Carlson, Aric Lyden, Kaiyla Delisle, Vivian Oakes, Sebastian Alfreds, Ryker Philbrick and Olivia Giandrea also took part in the competition.

2020 Greely Poetry Out Loud Contestants