Milton Speech Succeeds at Yale Invitational
by The Milton Measure on Friday, September 30th, 2011
This past weekend, Milton Academy competed in the prestigious Yale Invitational speech and debate tournament, hosted at Yale University. Milton took 8 students, whose events included original oratory, extemporaneous speaking, dramatic interpretation, original oratory, humorous interpretation, and congressional debate.Of the eight, Alicia Hernandez (II), Harry Wood (II), and Martin Page (I) placed in the top 24, 18, and 8 of their respective events.
The team regularly competes in both local tournaments-attended by up to 25 schools-and in national tournaments, whose attendance can range from a typical 75 schools to as many as 250.
These tournaments are divided into specialization categories into which students enter depending on their preference. Competitors can choose from a wide array of events. The events of prose, play reading, dramatic interpretation, and humorous interpretation require participants to cut a play, a novel, or a memoir into a 10 minute story. Those participating in the events develop strong performing skills, playing multiple characters at once.
Original oratory consists of writing, memorizing, and presenting a ten minute speech, while declamation requires the participant to perform, from memory, a 10 minute public address previously given by an important public figure. In declamation, students are encouraged to portray the public figure’s words in a new and interesting way.
Other events appeal to students who care deeply about current events that are constantly forming opinions about national and international affairs. In extemporaneous speaking, perhaps the most stressful category, students are given 30 minutes to prepare and memorize a five to seven minute speech answering a question pertaining to current events. In Congress, students debate potential bills that U.S. Congress may debate. Students have to formulate convincing arguments and rebuttals.
In his Congress Finals, Martin Page (I) dominated the debate and placed 8th overall, a highly impressive feat. Martin set a valuable example of a dedicated and driven “speechie”, effectively leading the entire Speech Team.
As the first tournament of the year, the Yale invitational set the standard for the Milton Academy speech team this year.
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