Six Speech Groups headed to All State


All State Participants. Front Row: Laila Moellering, Audrey Tucker, Remy Merrill, Ash Steen, Tessa Baty. Row2: Kylie Pyatt, Lillian Bishop, Finley McVay, Jessica Belding, Tori Oelrich, Lydia Benesh. Back Row: Dallas Olberding, Milo Olinger, Ty Panos, Michael Briesemeister, Aden Grudzinski, Piper Price, Natalie Spinsby.

Jessica Belding

After a long and successful State Speech competition, All State nominees were announced on Monday. The One Act play “All By Myself,” Ensemble Acting groups “Sports!” and “Controlling Interests”, Group Mime “Wherefore Art We?”, and Musical Theatre “Little Women” and “Villians Anonymous” were all nominated for All State held Feb. 19 in Ames. They were asked to sing the National Anthem at 8 a.m. for all of the people attending.

Juniors Lydia Benesh and Lillian Booth perform their Ensemble Acting skit for the student body in February. (Dallas Olberding)

“It’s much more fun performing in front of a group of people,” said junior Tori Oelrich of the competition. Speech practices involve rehearsals in a classroom without spectators. “Our piece is especially fun because it’s all girls pretending to be eight-year-old boys.”

Remy Merrill was part of a student-coached group that made it to All State. “My coaches were Tessa Baty and Lydia Benesh,” said Merrill, a junior. “They coached really well and were uplifting but also critical but helpful,” she said. “They were perfect and I’m so proud of them.”

Dallas Olberding is part of the One Act “All By Myself” which is going to All State but will not perform. “I’ll kind of just have a chill day watching other groups and supporting everyone,” said Olberding.

The State Large Group speech competition was held at Kennedy High School. Two groups earned an overall rating 1, while nine earned straight 1 ratings, which means all three judges watching the performance think that they did the best they could’ve done.

“I really enjoyed speech,” said senior Julia Dietsch. “Especially Readers Theatre. I joined my junior year but I wish I had started my freshman year.” Dietsch encourages all underclassmen to join the speech team, saying it’s a fun experience you can share with everyone and it’s something you will never forget.

Students began practicing in late October, meeting once or sometimes twice a week for an hour to go over their scripts. Speech coaches include Grant Feeman, Tawnua Tenley, and Zak Moran. The first event where they performed in front of people was their own WAMAC practice at the high school. Soon after was District competition in Monticello. Each category only had one judge, and if they received a “one,” they moved onto state.

State Large Group results