24 high school students chosen to compete in national poetry performance competition
Twenty-four high school students from across Canada have been chosen to compete in a national poetry performance competition known as Poetry in Voice, which awards $5,000 to the eventual winners and $1,000 to their school libraries.
The 24 semifinalists were chosen from over 10,000 entries and 1,400 schools.
Students are tasked with selecting two or three poems from a long diverse list of poetry curated by Poetry in Voice — which includes works by T.S. Eliot, Katherena Vermette, Dionne Brand and William Shakespeare. They then memorize and perform these poems for their classrooms and schools.
From there, a few students are chosen as school champions and submit video performances to Poetry in Voice, which selects the top 24. These semifinalists will compete in front of a live audience at the Winnipeg Art Gallery on April 25, 2019 at an event hosted by CBC Radio host Rosanna Deerchild. There are three streams of competition: English, bilingual and French.
The semifinalists in the English stream are:
- Cyrena Fiel from Etobicoke School of the Arts in Etobicoke, Ont.
- Berry Genge from Montague Regional High School in Montague, P.E.I.
- Catricia Hiebert from St. Mary's Catholic School in Sexsmith, Alta.
- Mackenzie Hutchinson from Prince of Wales Secondary School in Vancouver, B.C.
- Chandra Miller from Dr. Charles Best Secondary School in Coquitlam, B.C.
- Nawal Semir from Glenlawn Collegiate in Winnipeg, Man.
- Clara Sismondo from Kingston Collegiate & Vocational Institute in Kingston, Ont.
- Nina Thach from Kildonan East Collegiate in Winnipeg, Man.
- Sophia Wilcott from Harbour View High School in Saint John, N.B.
- Irene Zhang from Fraser Heights Secondary School in Surrey, B.C.
- William Zhang from University of Toronto Schools in Toronto, Ont.
- Matthew Zhou from London Central Secondary School in London, Ont.
The semifinalists in the bilingual stream are:
- Ghada Charki from Champlain Regional College – Saint Lambert in Saint-Lambert, Que.
- Troy Cheah from Dr. Charles Best Secondary School in Coquitlam, B.C.
- Peniel Negre from All Saints High School in Calgary, Alta.
- Jenny Wang from Collège Jean-de-Brébeuf, Montréal in Que.
- Keagan Yap from St. Joseph's Catholic High School in Windsor, Ont.
- Anna Yaung from Assumption College Catholic Secondary School in Windsor, Ont.
The semifinalists in the French stream are:
- Aksa Caleb from Philemon Wright High School in Gatineau, Que.
- Aimee-Larissa Dushime from St. Joseph's Catholic High School in Windsor, Ont.
- Mathilde Eustache from Cégep de Saint-Laurent in Montréal, Que.
- Nahida Mohamadou Kingui from Lycée Louis Pasteur School in Calgary, Alta.
- Laure Poitras from Cégep du Vieux Montréal in Montréal, Que.
- Perlina Ross-Brown from Collège Jean-Eudes in Montréal, Que.
The top three performers in each category will receive cash prizes for themselves and their school libraries: first place is $5,000 for the competitor and $1,000 for the library, second place is $1,000 for the competitor and $500 for the library and third place is $500 for the competitor and $250 for the school library.
This year's jury is comprised of Katherena Vermette, Jason Stefanik, Cecily Nicholson, Pierre Nepveu, Lise Gaboury-Diallo and Michaël Trahan.