The Rhythm of Prose: The Art of Poetic Voice with Sekou Andrews

The Rhythmic Dance of Words

In writing classes, teachers often encourage students to craft prose that flows like a dance, emphasizing the rhythmic cadence of well-chosen words. This concept is vividly exemplified by professional keynote speaker Sekou Andrews, whose unique speaking style blends inspirational speaking and spoken-word poetry, a genre he calls Poetic Voice.

Andrews’ speeches are more than just a string of words; they are performances infused with rhythm and melody. His delivery transforms typical soliloquies into engaging, musical experiences. For instance, consider his lines from a typical engagement:

“It’s not about us; it’s about the rush of helping someone help themselves thus discover themselves; it’s enough to adjust their financial plan before it’s beyond help or too tough…”

This poetic flow is not just about the content but the way Andrews presents it. His background in performing, rap, and poetry enables him to deliver his message with the commitment of a seasoned poet. The result is a captivating performance that resonates deeply with his audience.

The Genesis of Poetic Voice

Andrews’ journey to creating Poetic Voice began in middle school, where he discovered his passion for poetry and performing. Over the years, he honed his craft, performing at open-mic nights and eventually blending poetry with motivational speaking. This distinctive approach initially found a niche audience on college campuses and later expanded to the professional speaker circuit. In 2004, Andrews gained national attention by reciting the U.S. Declaration of Independence in a poetic format as part of a campaign to register a million new voters. His unique style caught the eye of major corporations like Nike and eBay, who sought his inspirational presence at their events.

Andrews believes in the transformative power of inspiration, coining the term “return on inspiration” (ROI) to describe the impact of his work. He explains, “The return on inspiration is your message catalyzed. It is your purpose pulled from the minds and sealed into the hearts of your audience.” This approach has proven effective, with Andrews’ poetic presentations driving energy and inspiration among diverse audiences.

Lessons from Sekou Andrews: Engaging Your Audience

Andrews’ success as a Poetic Voice speaker offers valuable lessons for anyone looking to enhance their public speaking skills. To truly engage audiences, one must embrace the concept of being a performer. Andrews advises speakers to “be the story” by using different voices, sound effects, and physical gestures to bring their message to life. Confidence is key, and Andrews often sits in various seats of an empty auditorium before his presentation to build a sense of ownership. This practice helps him adapt to unexpected situations, much like an improv artist. Andrews believes in using proximity to increase engagement, interacting closely with audience members to create a more intimate and impactful experience. Good speakers understand that credibility comes from being infectious and entertaining, not from authority. Andrews encourages speakers to foster a dialogue with their audience, connecting on a human level.

Sekou Andrews’ Poetic Voice is a testament to the power of rhythm and poetry in public speaking. His approach not only captivates audiences but also inspires them to embrace the best version of themselves. By adopting Andrews’ techniques, speakers can transform their presentations into memorable and impactful performances.

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