What a fantastic contest we had last Wednesday in so many respects! No fewer than 11 entries, with a couple of brave contestants entering both Humorous Speech and Table Topics contests.
Rowena, as contest chair, coped extremely well with all the challenges presented by strict security at RBS, hosting our many visitors including our valued outside judges, coordinating refreshments and of course briefing and introducing the contestants and keeping us entertained while the vote-counting took place. Armelle was a highly conscientious chief judge, organising and leading her team of judges and helpers very effectively, and a special vote of thanks to Eliza for liaising with the RBS premises and security team, magically maintaining her calm and charming smile throughout the challenges!
Our speakers were all extremely imaginative, weaving insights and anecdotes from their personal professional experience into brilliantly constructed and frequently hilarious speeches. I won’t go into much detail here as I don’t want to spoil the punch lines for the audience ahead of the Area contest on Wednesday, but here’s a quick recap for those who missed the contest and who cannot come on Wednesday:
Sayara kicked off the evening with some unconventional tips for her daughters on the dangers of chivalry, expertise and picking up jargon when they begin office life; Carrie recounted a recent tale of her constant battle between optimism and pessimism with her speech which was intriguingly titled ‘Is that a light shining at the end of the tunnel or a train rushing towards me’; Jane wowed us with her ambitions for sporting success in Tokyo 2020, and laid out a clear plan to achieve her place at the top of the podium; Ivy intrigued us with her childhood story of a mysterious encounter with a band of robbers at home in Lagos, and finally Susan set out to convince us of the need to work on our executive presence to advance our careers, through a cleverly constructed speech using negative logic and persuasion techniques, to give the audience her top tips for success. Our top 3 speakers (in order) were: 1st – Jane, 2nd – Sayara, 3rd – Carrie.
Rowena then led us through the table topics contest, using a transport theme inspired by the advent of London’s 24hr tube service, inviting contestants to recount their worst journey ever. We heard stories of cancelled and delayed flights, tortuous night bus journeys, and a selection of disastrous experiences on the tube – fortunately with hindsight, most of these had a funny side to them so we raced through all 6 speakers very efficiently. Our contestants were: Ailsa, Zhenzhen, Carrie, Sayara, Ivy and Helen and the top 3 contestants were 1st – Sayara, 2nd – Helen and 3rd – Ivy.
We’re delighted to be sending our winners and second place contestants through to the Area contest tomorrow, Wednesday, 28th September, to be held at Blackrock’s offices in Throgmorton Avenue. Please register and attend this contest as it’s really important for your club winners to see some familiar faces in the audience to support them (and laugh at their antics!)
This is where you sign up, and you can also share the link:
Congratulations and thanks to all who contributed to the evening, whether competing, organising, judging, supporting and of course the audience – you all made it into a memorable and happy occasion.
Please also note the following other upcoming events:
Sat 15 Oct: Division L Contest – full details to follow shortly but please save the date
5/6 Nov: District 91 Contest – full details to follow shortly, but please save this date too!
Mon 14 Nov : www.craig-valentine.eventbrite.co.uk – register quickly for early bird discount