Sarah Kay is a spoken word poet who grew up in New York City, where she began performing her poetry when she was only 14 years old. Sarah performed first at the Bowery Poetry Club, one of New York’s most famous spoken word venues. After that, she made regular appearances and found a new home in the poetry community. In 2004, Sarah founded Project V.O.I.C.E. which encourages youth to engage with the world around them and use spoken word poetry as a means of communicating their feelings and opinions, and better understand their culture, society, and themselves. She spoke at the TED conference in Long Beach, California in March 2011 and her speech, “If I should have a daughter” was a combination of spoken word poetry and her experience with Project V.O.I.C.E.
Sarah started her speech with a spoken word poem she wrote, “If I should have a daughter,” which created a mixture of interest and inspiration and grabbed the attention of the audience. After the poem, she spoke a little about how she got started with poetry and what inspired her to become a spoken word poet. She also explained what spoken word is and how it is often associated with performance poetry because the emotion written on the paper is acted out during the presentation with hand and body movements and facial expressions. Sarah did an excellent job of using body movements and facial expressions to act out the emotion in the writing and her tone changed depending on what she was saying. For example, when she was speaking about something entertaining, she had a light-hearted tone of voice and smiled and laughed to emphasize those feelings.
There was a great level of enthusiasm and passion during all moments of the speech, despite the tone of the topic. Even at the most serious moments, Sarah had a strong passion for what she was saying and it brought the audience even closer to her experiences. She also held the attention and interest of the audience by scanning the room rather than staring at one...
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