A sophomore at TMI – The Episcopal School of Texas was selected to advance to the state Poetry Out Loud competition, to be held Feb. 28, 2015, in Austin. Sophomore Alexandra Prado was the school competition’s winner; she will represent her school among students from high schools all over Texas. Junior Sofia Miranda-Fred was named runner up and will take part in the state competition if Prado is unable to attend.
The TMI competition was held Dec. 1 in the school’s Margaret M. Alkek Theater with eight contestants. Seniors Markell Henderson and Lexy Roberts, juniors Miranda-Fred and Elba O’Ward, sophomores Prado and Elizabeth Holmes and freshmen Greg Arcuri and Haddie Hill were chosen by their English teachers from classroom competitions in all four Upper School grades.
Students recited from memory one poem in each of two rounds, including the work of a diverse selection of poets including Rita Dove, Walter Savage Landor, Edgar Allan Poe, Theodore Roethke, Anne Sexton and Vijay Seshadri. Judges were local poets Jesse Cardona, Bonnie Lyons, Ph.D., and Mo Saidi, M.D.
The winner of the Texas state competition will go on to national competition April 28-29 in Washington D.C. This is the third year TMI has participated; each year, the school’s representative has made it to the final round at state.
Poetry Out Loud is a national program that encourages high-school students to learn about great poetry through memorization, performance and competition. Founded in 2005 by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation, the program has competitions in 2,255 high schools across the country.