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  • Author: varder
  • Date: 25-05-2015, 21:42
25-05-2015, 21:42

International Public Speaking Competition 2015 in London

Category: Information

Going to London to represent Ukraine in the International Public Speaking Competition 2015 held by the English-Speaking Union is the experience worth sharing. I wish everybody had such an opportunity!

The organizers of the IPSC 2015 did great job. The programme embraced 5 days – from 11 May to 15 May. During the first three days all 50 delegates from all the continents  had an opportunity to make friends and have fun. The competition itself took place on 14-15 May.

On Monday, 11 May all the tired of flight participants arrived  at the Headquarters of the ESU – Dartmouth House, a spectacular building, which reminded me of that old London I had imagined from the books of Arthur Conan Doyle and Charlotte Bronte. We played “ice-breaking games”, which were aimed for us to get to know each other faster. For example, each respectable delegate had to show his own country with the help of gestures. That was fun: some people danced, others imitated rowing or even kung-fu.

The next day we had workshops, being busily engaged in analyzing famous speeches. The organizers decided to intensify our cultural exchange by including country presentations in the programme of the competition. It was curious to observe our stereotypes break with loud crack. I did my best to inform people about Ukraine and its extreme beauty (in three minutes). Those three days were so dynamic: we visited Noel Coward Theatre to watch a musical “Matilda”, then the Tower of London, the Globe, where our mentor, an actress and a director, gave us acting classes. We mostly walked on foot, exploring London, chatting, teaching each other the phrases in our own languages and learning all the world cultures on the run. Everybody admitted, that those three days created such friendly and positive atmosphere, that nobody felt competitive.

However, the competition was approaching. It consisted of three rounds: heats, semi-final and final. In heats the participants were supposed to deliver their prepared speeches on the topic “Culture is not a luxury, but a necessity”. I would never imagine that this topic has SO many angles, as so many versatile ideas were expressed. Semi-final consisted of impromptu speeches. Some topics were easy enough, such as “All that glitters is not gold”, but the participants revealed them brilliantly avoiding trite and obvious things. Some were tricky, for example “A spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down”.  After this stage of the competition we had a boat tour along the Thames, which was a bit blurry due to famous London rains. In the evening all 50 delegates were bowling enthusiastically.

The Grand Final was held in the Headquarters of HSBC, the biggest bank of the UK. The general topic for the Final was “To be ignorant of the past is to remain a child”.  All the speakers were efficient and convincing, the ideas were fresh and of topical interest. The winner was a girl from Iceland Alma Ágútsdóttir.

After the Final we took photos (I have never done so many selfies in my entire life!), hugged, and promised to keep in touch. I am grateful to the ESU for that amazing cross-cultural, friendly busy week, which gave me 50 friends from all over the world!



Daria Bezzadina, a participant of the IPSC 2015, a student of KSPU






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