​Ted's 'Storm Break' Wins Poetry Recitation Competition 2019 | King's College Taunton

​Ted's 'Storm Break' Wins Poetry Recitation Competition 2019

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Since National Poetry Day, pupils from across the whole school have been reciting poems in their English lessons in preparation for this year’s Poetry Recitation Competition.

This week, we held the final of our annual competition in front of the whole school, with one of the youngest competitors taking the top spot.

Third Form pupil Ted Phillips recited his own poem ‘Storm Break’, and was the unanimous winner for his ability to convey understanding, his choice of language carefully considered, delivered and emphasised.

The runner up this year was Monica Yuen with her recitation of ‘Repetition’ by Japanese-American poet Phil Kaye. The judges were impressed with her ambition at choosing the longest of all the works recited this year.

Highly commended was Fifth Form pupil Anastasia Woodard. Reciting ‘Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep’ by Mary Elizabeth Frye, her delivery was noted for its clarity, volume and projection.

During the interval staff and pupils were entertained by Sixth Form pupil Loveday Hedgcock and her recitation of Gerard Manley Hopkins’ ‘The Windhover’ and Leo Hanneforth, who recited ‘The Elephant’ in German.

Chairing the judging panel again this year was Matt Bryden, local poet, teacher and translator. Matt was again impressed with the standard of the recitations and really sensed the community’s love of literature. He followed up the competition judging with a workshop forThird and Fourth Form classes, on tackling an environmental theme in poetic medium, inspired by Simon Armitage and some well-known proverbs.

Commenting, Head of English, Toby Smith said:

It was great to see a Third Former take the overall winner’s prize, and both the look of joy on Ted’s face and the resounding applause from his audience were striking memories of an exciting event.

I was really impressed by the finalists’ ability to work with real control on the details of their delivery in performance: a subtle pause, or shift in stress or intonation can provide a striking chance to change the listener’s experience, and they all understood their chosen works profoundly.”

The prize fund totalling £600, was kindly donated by the Joan Sewell Bequest Fund.


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Our Pringle team have returned victorious after competing in the Sir Steuart Pringle Trophy Competition at CTCRM Lympstone. This prestigious military competition is attended by schools from across the country, and challenges leadership, teamwork, decision-making, fitness and specific military knowledge.

Not only did the team win the overall title, they also lifted five individual trophies, making this the best result in the school's history.

More information to follow, plus a gallery of images from the weekend.