One night a year, Xavier students put their talents to the test and perform for an open house of audiences. The Speech Showcase took place in the Regis-LaSalle Theatre on Tuesday, January 21, 2020.
“Speech Showcase is about performing the large group events that we have been working on since November for parents, family and other students,” Speech coach Laura Travagiakis said. “Hosting the showcase is helpful for students because they are in frontof an audience for the first time.”
The showcase is also a nonjudged event so it allows students to just have fun and get their nerves out.
“Speech Showcase is like a competition atmosphere before districts on [the following] Saturday,” senior Ryan Vondracek said.“Thisiswheretheparentswho work on the weekend can come and see their kids perform and is the only place they can take photos.”
Vondracek has been involved in speech for four years at Xavier.
“There is something for everyone in speech,” Travagiakis said. “Nervous about performing in front of an audience? We have three different events that are prerecorded, so the students never have to worry about stage fright if they don’t want to. Do you want to tell powerful stories or make people laugh until they cry? There are acting and improvisation groups for that.”
The showcase is a bittersweet evening for the seniors as it is their last time on the Xavier stage as a part of the Xavier Speech Team.
“My favorite part about showcase is watching the other acts and seeing all of their hard work payoff,” senior Nicole Constant said.
One can watch the speech team in action at Cedar Rapids Washington High School on Saturday, February 8.
“Speech teaches you a lot of life challenges like public speaking and memorization,” Vondracek said. “The friendships you make are people you never would even talk to but they end up becoming some of your closest friends.”