This year’s Verse Speaking final was held yesterday, on 21st May at 5pm via Zoom. The final was watched by 172 boys, parents and grandparents, even from places as far away as the USA, China, Mexico and India.

The boys’ verse speaking was judged by Eton College’s Dr Marco Liviero. We are very grateful that he gave his time for adjudicating this year’s final. 

Dr Liviero is a graduate of the universities of Padua and Birmingham. He gained a PhD in renaissance drama in 1997 at the latter institution. He has taught English at Cheltenham College, King’s School Canterbury and, since 2001, Eton College. He was a housemaster and has directed over thirty plays at the school where he also oversees Public Speaking, which he sees as a wonderful way to bring the written word into life. 

After the reciting of all finalists’ entries, Dr Liviero gave some wonderful feedback to all the boys. He said: “There was plenty of evidence of clarity, focus, conviction and a sense of truth. Your recitations allowed me to see with my ears and you really gave life and shape to the words of each poem.”

Dr Liviero was extremely impressed by all of the boys’ performances and found it hard to determine clear winners. In addition to the winners listed below, Dr. Liviero especially commended the following boys for the high quality of their recitation: Jacob Andrews, Oisin Hay, Justin Yu and Dylan Clash. After much consideration, the following winners were announced:

  • Charlie Wells (Juniors)
  • Rufus Gould (Intermediates)
  • William Seymour (Seniors)
  • Overall winner: William Seymour (Rudiments)

William was particularly praised for the passion and ‘truth’ of his recital which truly brought the words of the Bard off the page and into our hearts and minds.

Our sincere thanks go to all the boys who have put so much work into learning and reciting their poems: and to the staff and parents who have helped prepare them and to the audience for their support and appreciation.


  • Maxi M – The ABC 
  • Daniel N – Let No One Steal Your Dreams
  • Charlie W- London Underground Terms and Conditions 
  • MJ H – Have a Nice Day 
  • Elijah M - Sonnet 18 
  • Oisin H – Sky in the Pie 
  • Bangzai L – Sneezles 
  • Jacob A – Thunder and Lightning 
  • Zachary M – Light Snake 


  • Bailey W – If I Had The Chance
  • Jack B – Football 
  • Alex B – Dulce et Decorum Est
  • Rufus G- Excerpt from As You Like It: Act 2 Scene 7 
  • Reuel  J – Ozymandias 
  • Justin Y – Captain My Captain 
  • Ethan M  – Refugee Blues 
  • Easher S – My Grandma’s 11 
  • Sajan B – Sonnet 65 
  • Freddie R – Terence, This is Stupid Stuff
  • Mauro M – There Will Always Be Poetry 
  • Marcus D – Excerpt from Henry V III i 
  • Lucas T – The Commentator 
  • Dylan C – Poem in October 
  • Inigo F – Life 
  • Sidney S – VE Day 


  • George M – Dulce et Decorum Est
  • Enzo PB – Solitude 
  • Francisco DLCM – Teneis que oirme 
  • Aiden K – Excerpt from Romeo and Juliet Ii 
  • Michael S –  Excerpt from Romeo and Juliet II iii 
  • Joshua O – Willwong In Flanders Fields 
  • Harry J – Excerpt from Julius Caesar III ii 
  • William S – Excerpt Romeo and Juliet III iii 
  • Alexander P – Tarantella 

Well done!

It is the job of poetry to clean up our word-clogged reality by creating silences around things.
Stephen Mallarme