From Jill Segal, Division B Governor
Division B’s Humorous and Table Topic contests were billed as a clash of the Titans and that was what everyone present at Freemasons’ Hall on Saturday morning 11 October 2014 experienced. The day began with an inspirational, interactive workshop on memory facilitated by Area 53 Governor Charlie Warshawski. He communicated methods which proved how simply ‘What – no notes’, the title of the session, could be achieved. This was a pared down training version of various tried and tested tools and Charlie will be circulating his notes to everyone who registered their attendance at the session.
Two of our Division B superstars chaired the contests. Glen Savage, a finalist at District 91 Humorous Speech contest 2013, brought his expertise to the podium. He warmed up the audience with a hip-swinging sashay through dance styles comparing them to the power, passion and mood of a speech. With the audience ready to howl with laughter they were not disappointed by contestants Danny Callaghan, Patrick Ebbs, Errol Williamson, Annabelle Carmichael and Tazud Miah, all of whom kept up the rate of humour. The judges must have been really taxed making a decision and Tazud held the winner’s trophy by the end of the morning. Danny Callaghan and Annabelle Carmichael came second and third respectively.
Paul Carroll, a UK & Ireland Table Topics Champion, led contestants skilfully and with gravitas through the Table Topics contestant. His topic referring to Einstein’s post nuclear observation that we need a new way to think brought a rich variety of answers from Kedar Godbole, Isabel de la Cour, Julia Collings, Jill Harris and Ian Hawkins. The trophy was awarded to a Julia Collings (pictured above with Taz), a member of new corporate club Ofgem Speakers Club – truly an inspiration for everyone to try their luck in contests. A very worthy Isabel de la Cour and Ian Hawkins came second and third respectively.
Andy O’Sullivan was the accomplished Chief Judge and four members of the District Leadership team attended. The event could not have been successful without the additional help of all those who took on roles and who were publicly thanked at the end of the event. As in many an Oscar ceremony or Tour de France acceptance speech someone important is unwittingly omitted. A big thank you also goes to Neil Coleman who did an excellent job setting up all the technical aspects of the room, including the photos, working with Tom Feist-Wilson at his side.
Photo L-R Contest Chairs Glen Savage and Paul Carroll entertaining us with their double act.