By Melvyn K
Excitement buzzed around the hall as Ascot Speakers hosted their second International Speech and Evaluation Competition at their our All Souls’ Church venue in South Ascot.
Before the meeting began Ann M, the club’s President, briefed the Speakers and declared the speech order. Also experienced Toastmaster and member of the club, Jacqui H, briefed all the Judges explaining how to fill out the forms.
The meeting began like every other meeting with Sergeant-At-Arms Melvyn K’s friendly face welcoming everyone to the meeting and introducing our President: Ann M. Julie H was our Contest Chair; she explained how the contest would work and that the speakers had ‘drawn straws’ for their places.
International Speech Competition
The first speaker in the speech competition was Reshmi B giving an impassioned speech entitled ‘Who do you think you are?’ that elaborated on the difference between how you view your strengths and weaknesses in comparison to how friends and family view you. She also highlighted the fact that sometimes we can over generalize about ourselves and can filter out postitive things others see about us from how we view ourselves. James H was our next speaker with his excellently entitled speech ‘Women please cut Men some slack’. He looked at the proposition that these days it is hard for us to find good role models amongst men (including sportmen, politicians, etc) as they are all a bit unsatisfactory. However, he also surmised that attitudes to things like equality were slowly changing amongst Fathers that would be passed onto their sons. Nikita P, our final speaker, also gave an impressive speech entitled ‘Blind Spots’ looking at when two people can both have valid perpectives (in what is known as dilectics or contrasting thinking). Something we all have struggles with within ourselves but which is also resolvable.
After our customary refreshments break the contest resumed with an Evaluator competition. Our guest and key speaker from Beaconsfield Speakers clubs was Eddie M delivering a great speech “I don’t believe” on subject of Ghosts. It was great opportunity for us lesser experienced speakers to watch such a crafted performance from such a seasoned local speaker .
First up as an Evaluator was Ann M who highlighted what an interesting speech Eddie M gave us and that how he could possibly used the space of our new venue even more.
Second up was David B who commended the speakers excellent story telling ability.
Our third Evaluator to speak was Nikita P who also praised Eddie M for a great speech .
The next person to perform their Evaluation was Mark M, who was equally effusive regarding Eddie M ‘s specch and delivery.
It was good to see all the evaluators pick up on different aspects of the performance.
Judging and Entertainment
The judging slips were handed to Chief Judge Jacqui H and Counter, Fred B. They went to the back of the room the room whilst the rest of us were left in the hands of Julie H who gave us some interesting insights into competitions, followed by Terry from Chiltern speakers, to pass the time during the counting and writing of certificates.
Just as the last person spoke, the Counters and Chief Judge entered the room.
Awards and Closing
Everyone who participated was awarded an official Toastmasters International competition certificate.
Results of the International Speech Contest:
- James H [winner]
- Reshmi B
- Nikita P
Results of the International Evaluator Contest:
- Nikita P [winner]
- Mark M
The next meeting will take place on 28 March 2018 .
We look forward to seeing you then.