Monday, February 24, 2020

Two Charleston students will participate in Poetry Out Loud state finals this March

Hometown pride

Posted by Christian Robinson on Mon, Feb 24, 2020 at 10:09 AM

click to enlarge Janae Claxton won the nat'l prize in 2018 - FILE PHOTO
  • File photo
  • Janae Claxton won the nat'l prize in 2018
Two Charleston students, Rowland Marshall from Wando High School and Carson Stehling from Charleston County School of the Arts, compete in the Poetry Out Loud state finals on Sat. March 14 in Columbia, 3-5 p.m. The free event will be held in the Richland Library main branch.

Poetry Out Loud, presented by the South Carolina Arts Commission, is a spoken poetry competition that encourages public speaking, improves self-confidence, and teaches students about literary history. Poetry Out Loud is in its 14th year and, serving as a resource for both high school students and teachers alike.

Both of the Charleston students participating in the state finals exhibit a real passion for the spoken word. We had the good fortune to experience their regional performances first-hand. Marshall read his poetry with the power and poise of an actor, drawing attention from the audience like a thunderclap. Stehling was strong and had a quiet grace, flowing through the poem with ease.

Keep your eyes on both of these students because one of them may very well be South Carolina's representative in the national Poetry Out Loud competition.

In past years Charleston students have had a strong showing in the Poetry Out Loud competition, with Janae Claxton of First Baptist School taking home the top national prize just two years ago.

Learn more about the South Carolina Arts Commission online at

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