Poetry Out Loud

Poetry Out Loud is a national recitation contest that celebrates the power of the spoken word and a mastery of public speaking skills while cultivating self-confidence and an appreciation of students’ literary heritage as they take poetry from the page to the stage. Poetry Out Loud has inspired hundreds of thousands of high school students to discover and appreciate both classic and contemporary poetry.

Register Your School Champion for the Poetry Out Loud Semi-Finals 

Important Dates

School-Level Contest Deadline:  Friday, February 8, 2019

Deadline to Register your School Winner as a Semi-Finalist:  Friday, February 15, 2019

Semi Final Contests:

Saturday, March 2, 2019 in Framingham and Newburyport

Sunday, March 3, 2019 in Cape Cod and Springfield

Monday, March 4, 2019 in Boston

Semi-Final Location Assignments

Massachusetts State Finals:  Sunday, March 10, 2019

RSVP for State Finals 

National Finals in Washington, DC: Monday, April 29 - Wednesday, May 1, 2019

**All contests at all levels are free and open to the public. If you have any questions, please email

Poetry Out Loud in Massachusetts: History and Statistics

Why participate in Massachusetts Poetry Out Loud? 

Get Involved in Poetry Out Loud

For more information on Poetry Out Loud, visit the official website at For information about the Massachusetts competition, please contact Meg O'Brien, Interim Co-Director of Education, at 617 273 1558 or email

"POETRY OUT LOUD helps students master public speaking skills, build self-confidence, and learn about their literary heritage.  By encouraging your students to study, memorize, and perform some of the most influential and timeless poems of the English language, you immerse them in powerful expression and provocative ideas.  Although many students may initially be nervous about reciting in front of their peers, the experience will prove invaluable — not only in school, but also in life.  Much of the future success of students will depend on how well they present themselves in public.  Public speaking is a skill people use every day on both the workplace and the community."National Endowment for the Arts & The Poetry Foundation


Presented by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation, in partnership with the Mass Cultural Council and the Huntington Theatre Company.

  Poetry Foundation Logo Mass Cultural Council

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