Speakers Take the Stage: SEA Forensics 2016

The halls reek with anxiety. Students scramble around and speak under their breath in an attempt to prepare. The 18th of february was a day filled with students running around from event to event, delivering speeches with eloquence. The effort and preparation that went into these performances is astonishing. Multiple school in asia came for the forensics tournament including students from Hong Kong. ISKL did remarkably well for the first forensics competition of the year. Culcon looms in the future, providing another chance for those who participated in SEA to speak yet again.

SEA was a rather successful tournament for impromptu. Three of the four participants form ISKL made semi-finals, and one student–Kris Jeong, went on to battle it out in the finals. The speakers these girls where going against were phenomenal, everyone shocked the crowds with their composure, and content in terms of what they were able to prepare in a measly minute. One student from KTG even wrote a short poem for the audience in his brief preparation time. The halls were filled with impromptu students managing their nervousness in different ways– some chose to voice their emotions,and made friends while waiting, others practiced vocal exercises, and lastly there were those who plugged in their headphones and indulged in peaceful music. Kris Jeong was the only ISKL student to make finals after a tough round of semi-finals with some very close calls she modestly confesses that “I’d like to up my game a bit more in terms of passion, since I’ve worked for a year in detaching myself from the speeches.” while her performance in impromptu is remarkable she still hopes to up her game.

The OI team dominated this competition. There is no other way to put it, the team made it to finals, and not only competed for medals but earned every single one of them. Zarina Angell took the gold– for the second year in a row, Lily Casey placed second and lastly Safa Arshadullah ended strongly with a bronze medal. Lily Casey admitted that  “I was definitely most nervous about 10 seconds before it was my turn” however the results say otherwise, as all the contestants kept their cool. Zarina Angell was “nervous that i wouldn’t live up to last years expectations and i didn’t do as well at first but i persisted and worked hard” sometimes the pressures from previous competitions can alter your performance, but like most students at SEA Zarina kept persevering until she did her personal best–which happened to be the best in the whole tournament.

Debate came very close to tasting the gold medal. Nish, Sonja, and Nick all debated very strongly against KTG.  They participated in a heated argument over the controversial legalisation of recreational drugs. ISKL was in the affirmative, while KTG was the opposition, unfortunately KTG took home the gold this year, and the dynamic trio from ISKL has experienced its last debate against this team. The most rewarding part about coaching for Mr.Martin (the debate coach) is “Watching my debaters attain a level of excellence through hard work, persistence, and creative flair” he must definitely be very proud of the results from SEA, not only for the silver medalist team but for all of the teams that participated for debate.  “Over the years I’ve the greatest respect for my debate teams, who have consistently demonstrated outstanding ability and dedication. This year is certainly no exception”

Exempt and Original oratory did very well in this tournament. Lily Casey in the OO team confessed that she simply loved the event because “ it was something that was very much mine” she made it to semifinals and was able to deliver a speech she had been working on for a long time.  “it was my own ideas and hard work” she says, in contrast to OI she was not simply reciting something but voicing her own opinions. Ilona Van Reenen was a freshman on the team and faced her very first SEA forensics. “I did do better in my first speech, weirdly so, as I could not find a source, and so I just made up answers to the question, despite not quite understanding it. However, the judges thought I did well, despite the lack of evidence.” while it was a tough round of exempt for Ilona she managed to pull through in the true spirit of competition. Unfortunately Alexis a sophomore was the only ISKL student to make semi-finals.

The forensics events will only continue to grow and improve as Culcon looms in the future. Teams prepare for the last days in order to optimise their performance. SEA forensics was a very successful competition for all events regardless of placing, or medals, the students worked very hard to deliver wonderful speeches throughout the tournament.