Poetry Aloud 2021 - Poetry Speaking Competition

 Poetry Aloud 2021

Poetry Aloud competition 2021  - Coming soon!

Thanks to the teachers and students who entered the 2020 virtual Poetry Aloud competition.  Poetry Aloud, an annual poetry speaking competition open to all post-primary students on the island of Ireland, is open for virtual entries from schools.

The competition, which has run since 2007 and has involved thousands of students in that time, has changed its structure for this year due to the challenges presented by Covid-19.

The first round this year consisted of a virtual competition in lieu of on-site regional heats. Students were selected from this round and the final will also consist of a virtual competition.

All the details required to enter are on this form (pdf and Word)

Poetry Aloud 2020 (pdf)Information (pdf)Information, (, Adobe PDF)

Poetry Aloud 2020  POETRY ALOUD 2020 Information and Entry form.docx (0.78 MB, File)

Poetry Aloud is organised by Poetry Ireland and the National Library of Ireland in partnership with University College Cork.

Poetry Aloud 2019

The 2019 Poetry Aloud national winners were:
• Junior category: Ellie Reynolds, Lismore Comprehensive School, Craigavon, Co. Armagh

• Intermediate category: Lara McDonnell, The King's Hospital School, Dublin

• Senior category: Michael Tient, Marino College, Dublin

Overall Winner:  Ellie Reynolds

The 2019 Poetry Aloud runners-up were:
• Junior category: Siollan Doran, Lismore Comprehensive School, Craigavon, Co. Armagh

• Intermediate category: Murray Sheehan, St.Gerard's School, Bray, Co. Wicklow

• Senior category: Seán Mac Curtáin, Gaelcholáiste Chéitinn, Clonmel,  Co. Tipperary

Book tokens were presented to the category runners-up.

Ellie was chosen as overall winner and awarded the Seamus Heaney Poetry Aloud Award. The perpetual trophy is designed by Meath-based sculptor Fiona Smith-Darragh. The overall winner receives an additional €300.
Each winning school receives €300 in book tokens for the school library.

New to Poetry Aloud?

All details regarding the competition are on the Entry form:

If you have enquiries, email us at: poetryaloud@nli.ie

Overall Winner 2018: Majella Votta

Majella VottaMajella Votta

UCC announced as partner
In June 2018 Poetry Ireland and the National Library of Ireland announced that University College Cork (UCC) has joined as a partner on Poetry Aloud, the annual poetry speaking competition for post-primary schools, in a new 10-year agreement.

Overall winner 2017: Brendan MacDomhnaill

 Brendan Mac Domhnaill, Coláiste Oiriall, Monaghan

Working collaboratively on Poetry Aloud, the NLI and Poetry Ireland aim to bring “poetry into the memory and affections of the young in a way that will make it a lifelong possession and value”. (Seamus Heaney)
Participants in Poetry Aloud are included in the Verse and Vision section of the award winning exhibition Yeats: the life and work of William Butler Yeats at the National Library and in the Words and Music - The Sounds of War section of the library’s exhibition World War Ireland. Participants have taken part in commemoration events in the library during 2017/2018 and in external events organised by the NLI and Poetry Ireland.

What is Poetry Aloud?

Poetry Aloud winner 2016 Nathan Quinn O’RawePoetry Aloud winner 2016 Nathan Quinn O’Rawe

Poetry Aloud is the annual poetry speaking competition organised by the National Library and Poetry Ireland. It is open to all post-primary school students on the island of Ireland.
The Poetry Aloud competition, run by the Library in conjunction with Poetry Ireland, was honoured at a gala ceremony at the British Library in London at which poet Seamus Heaney was presented with the David Cohen Prize for Literature 2009 for a lifetime's achievement in literature.
In nominating Poetry Aloud as the recipient of a subsidiary prize, the Clarissa Luard Award, Seamus Heaney cited the extraordinary way in which the competition seeks to celebrate the joy of speaking and listening to poetry as well as the fact that there is a strong North/South dimension to the competition.

Post Primary Education at the NLI
Post Primary Education at the NLI
Quick Links