Echoes: The Virtual Poetry Challenge is a challenge, not a competition. The anticipated 12 selected finalists will critically assess and perform great poetic works recommended in the CXC/CAPE syllabi and the English Language curriculum.
They will make an echo of that craft, through reinterpretation, recitation or/and revision; demonstrating their riveting skills, as they analyse poetry from seemingly archaic poets such as: Wilfred Owen, Seamus Heaney, Mark Mc Watt, Gerard Hopkins, Martin Carter, Lorna Goodison and Rita Dove.
This vocal delivery and their writing capabilities will be accentuated by essential staging conventions—costuming, sound, lighting, dramatisation, dance, dramatic entrances and exits, props, backdrops—which will enable an amazing experiential learning experience to be unfolded for all participants and attendees (teachers and students nationally).
The registration for this challenge currently extends until September 30. There will be a Participants Preparation One-day Workshop where national and international poets and thespians will share on topics including, but not limited to, the importance of sound, context, diction etc to poetry and its impact on the listeners—as drama is meant to be seen, poetry is meant to be heard and prose is meant to be read!
This is the second edition of Echoes, as the challenge was conducted by Milwaz Productions at the Southern Academy of Performing Arts, on October 11, 2018. The winners surely outdid themselves intricately weaving together poetry and drama; flawlessly and with creative genius.
Anyawa Adams of St Francois Girls College was the winner of this challenge, follow by Odunmbaku Somorin in second place, and in third place Naomi Messiah, both of Bishop Anstey and Trinity College East sixth form.
Through this initiative by Milwaz Productions, students will escape their virtual classroom walls of monotony and escape into the cityscape of poetry education.
The production team’s desire is to make a difference in the educational experience of students nationwide.
They facilitate this by enabling a transformation of their attitude, mindset and appreciation for the performing arts, English Language and English Literature through demonstrating the greatness of the artform.
Through this, they open doors to social youth development, theatrical/educational understanding and critical thinking.
Prizes will also be distributed to the most supportive teacher, the school with the most team spirit and the participant with the most social media support, among many other prizes. There is over $15,000 in prizes to be won.
The project is also intended to encourage students during this difficult pandemic season. It gives them something to look forward to and an opportunity to represent their school.
Thus far, Milwaz Productions have had support from recognisable poets, from the poetry literary landscape of T&T such as: Circle of Poets TT, Nicholas Sosa, Devon Musgrave, Derron Sandy, songwriter Samuel Selkeridge, Jonathan “Shiselon” Da Silva, Alexandra Stewart, the National Poetry Slam defending champion and many others. They have joined the team to help revolutionise the way students view poetry and boost the appreciation of that literary facet.