Shane Anderson, a sophomore at Bear River High School in Nevada County, was the third-place winner today in the California Arts Council’s 2012-13 Poetry Out Loud! high school recitation competition.
The Poetry Out Loud! competition has been a program of the California Arts Council since 2006. Nevada County joined the competition in 2007-08 with Forest Neff of Bear River being the first county champion.
Anderson is Nevada County’s first champion to make it into the top three out of a pool of competitors from 34 counties with thousands of students competing from San Diego, Orange, Riverside, Los Angeles, Ventura, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Monterey, Santa Cruz, Tuolumne, Stanislaus, Madera, Santa Clara, Alameda, Contra Costa, San Francisco, Sacramento, Inyo, Mono, El Dorado, Placer, Solano, Marin, Sonoma, Mendocino, Lake, Yolo, Sutter, Napa, Lassen, Modoc, Siskiyou and Humboldt counties.
The competition encourages high school students to memorize and then recite historic and contemporary poems. For the county competition, they need to learn two poems, but for the state, they need to learn three — one that is from a pre-20th century poet and one that is 25 lines or fewer. The student then needs to learn how to convey the meaning of the poet through the recitation.
Nevada County poets, who are part of the California Poets in the Schools, Chris Olander and Julie Valin have been coaching Nevada County’s winners for four years. Olander coached Placer County’s 2008 winner who went on to the finals in Washington, D.C.
The Nevada County competition could not be accomplished without the support of teachers at Bear River, Ghidotti and Nevada Union high schools. Bear River’s teachers, beginning with Steve Hansen and then Kristina Stroeve and Jason Bohrer, have worked hard encouraging their students to participate. Bear River provided its theater for the county competition in 2011/12. The county competition also has had strong support from the beginning of the Nevada County superintendent of schools’ staff liaison, Judy Nielsen.
The Poetry Out Loud! Nevada County competition is a program of Foothill Arts Resources & Media organization.
See a video of Shane's recitation here. (Shane is introduced at 1:44:00)
For information, call 530-798-5955 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Penelope Curtis is the Nevada County coordinator for Poetry Out Loud!