Vermont’s Poetry Slam Champion Returns to TA
November 22, 2021
Since 2016, creative writing students at TA have had the unique opportunity to work with Vermont’s reigning poetry slam champion, author, poet, and performer Geof Hewitt. This year, Hewitt joined Mr. Mann’s Creative Writing course as an artist-in-residence.
Over the course of the week with Hewitt, Mann’s students engaged in a variety of poetic exercises and excursions. They learned about the art and science of poetry and performance. The Poet-in-Residence unit wrapped up with 14 student and faculty poets sharing their work in the MJR Theater in a poetry slam format.
The poets performed their poems for their peers and for the student judges, who ranked their performances on a scale of 1-10. Spectators were encouraged to loudly cheer or boo the judges assessments, but the scores remained final. In the end, the slam produced one winner: TA sophomore Ailia Hedgepeth. It was a great capstone to a week of celebrating poetry in the classroom.
The 2021 presenting poets were (in order of presentation): Alex Fein, Olivia Hastings, Shisi Dai, Mr. Deffner, Ailia Hedgepeth, Asa Kelleher, Katie Waterman, Cecilia Luce, Mr. Mann, Mary Bosco, Abigail Dixon, Liam Patterson, Annie Hesser, and Ben Mattern.