North Polk’s 2020 Speech Showcase closes the large group season with fantastic performance, as well as special surprise

Sophie Hoffmeier, Staff Writer

*Originally posted on our beta site March 12, 2020.

With Large Group Speech ending and Individuals just beginning, the speech program at North Polk put on a showcase of the many people and groups that are avidly involved on Thursday, Feb. 27. The performances ranged from individual poem readings to the All-State groups ‘Boys of Broadway” and “Imagination”.

The showcase this year included several of the Large Group acts that went to State Speech, and as forementioned, the two groups that attended All-State Speech. Individual speech contestants also performed their acts for the audience of friends and family alike.

“I thought it was really fun to perform my ensemble act on stage,” junior Sophie Vernon said. “But it was nerve-wracking because I was performing it for kids that go to our school, not judges.”

Vernon was a part of two acts in the showcase, “”, an ensemble, and “Imagination”, the choral reading that made it to All-State. The showcase allowed many speech kids to display their many talents.

“I think that the showcase went really well,” sophomore Wyatt Johnston said. “Everyone who wanted to show their acts performed, and people got to get a good look at the speech program.”

For large group students like Johnston, the speech showcase was the last time that large group events performed, since the season ended.

“I loved the pieces I was involved in, and it was super fun to get to perform them one last time for my friends and family,” junior Sydney Weers said. “It was also super fun to have Mrs. Vernon introduce all of the acts!”

The speech coaches, Susan Vernon and Tia Stubbs, went through the showcase as they had planned. However, the musical theater students had a surprise for them as the showcase came to an end. The three musical theater groups came together on stage to perform “Seasons of Love” from the popular musical “Rent”.

“The idea actually began with a joke that runs in the musical theater community,” Weers said. “There’s always a handful of songs that are very overdone in musical theater, and one of those songs happened to be ‘Seasons of Love’.”

The musical theater students practiced in secret in order to secure their surprise for the speech coaches.

“We all kept it a secret for awhile, and we got together one day to run through it,” freshman Elijah McDonald said. “It was really fun to see everyone working together.”

The “Seasons of Love” performance remained a secret from the coaches, and managed to stay secret to the other speech students outside of musical theater.

“I loved the song at the end,” Sophie Vernon said. “It honestly made me tear up a little bit. I thought it was a great way to end the showcase, and it brought attention to the wonderful speech coaches that we have, Mrs. Vernon and Mrs. Stubbs!”