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Resources for declamation. Includes links to archived declamation performances, sources for material.

Public Declamation schedule

2023-24 dates

First Public Declamation -- Class VI audience 

  • Interest form due Tuesday, 9/28/23
  • Tryouts Thursday, 10/5/232:30 in BLS auditorium
  • Declamation Thursday, 10/12/23, R1-R2

Second Public Declamation -- Class IV audience

  • Interest form due Thursday, 11/30/23
  • Tryouts Thursday, 12/7/23, 2:30 in BLS auditorium
  • Declamation Tuesday, 12/20/23, R1-R2

Third Public Declamation -- Class III audience 

  • Interest form due Thursday, 1/18/24
  • Tryouts Thursday, 1/25/24, 2:30 in BLS auditorium
  • Declamation Thursday, 2/8/24, R1-R2

Fourth Public Declamation -- Class V audience

  • Interest form due Thursday, 3/14/24
  • Tryouts Thursday, 3/21/24, 2:30 in BLS auditorium
  • Declamation Thursday, 3/28/24, R1-R2

Prize Declamation -- Class I & II, alumni ​​​

  • Friday, 5/3/24


For the 2023-24 academic year, the following staff members coordinate Public and Prize Declamation. Please reach out with any questions:

Why declaim?

Boston Latin School declaimers discuss the history of the declamation tradition, offer advice, and reflect on why they participate.

Why declaim?

Spring 2021

This video features Prize Declamation performances for the 2020-21 academic year. Due to the pandemic, it was filmed in an empty auditorium, but the participating students relished the prospect of speaking from the stage. 

Prize Declamation, Spring 2021


Class I & II

  • Julianna Zhao, excerpt from The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan, Prize Dec Winner: Cornelia Martin Sullivan Award & Alfred Lawrence Kaufman Prize
  • Graciela Berman Reinhardt, excerpt from The Sun Does Shine by Anthony Ray Hinton, second place
  • Ruth Shiferaw, excerpt from "The Hill We Climb" by Amanda Gorman, third place
  • Alex Chou, excerpt from Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro, fourth place
  • Jack Trapanick, excerpt from Socrates Apologia

Classes III & IV

  • Mirabelle Berman Reinhardt, excerpt from The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander, division winner
  • Selina Tang, excerpt from How To Be An Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi
  • Jessie Wang, "Worms" by Carl Dennis

Class V

  • Ailin Sha, excerpt from “Commencement Speech to Wellesley College's Class of 2015” by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, division winner


2020 Hope and Justice declamation

When school closed abruptly in the spring of 2020, students rallied to present final inspirational declamation pieces instead of the traditional Prize Declamation. Recorded in their homes and yards, they showed great ingenuity and fortitude and worked with their teachers and several graduating seniors to produce this memorable collection.

Hope and Justice Includes excerpts from the following:

  • Adichie, Chimamanda Ngozi. "Commencement Address at Williams College, 2017"
  • Alexander, Kwame. "'Running For Your Life': A Community Poem For Ahmaud Arbery"
  • Angelou, Maya. "The Inauguration; Maya Angelou: 'On the Pulse of Morning"
  • Baraka, Amiri. "Why is We American"
  • Centolella, Thomas. "The Hope I Know"
  • Gill, Nikita. "kindness"
  • King, Martin Luther. "The Other America"
  • Thunberg, Greta. "Change Is Coming, Whether You Like It or Not"
  • Winfrey, Oprah. "What Will Your Essential Service Be?"