Epsom Speakers 20th Jan 2020

It might have been cold in Ewell last night, but there was a warm welcome for all at Epsom Speakers.

We welcomed three new guests to our meeting; Jack, Debra and Brian. We also had our District Director Florian Bay and our area director, Vaneshan.

Debra started the meeting as our Sargent at arms, only the third time but she takes control well.

After winning a holiday, our President Dave was somewhere warmer, but Mark Peacock stood in for a warm welcome to us all.

For this meeting we were put in the hands of Gillian Prior as our Toastmaster. She was helped by her team for the evening;

  • Kat Romananska had the stopwatch, lights and ‘squeaking pig’ to keep us all within the time during the evening. 
  • John took control of the video camera to record the speakers and evaluators.
  • Patrick Ebbs took the responsibility for collecting and counting the ballots

Gary Argent gave us a great warm-up challenge and I am please to say this video has been made public.

When everyone had completed their warmups. Our Toastmaster introduced our 4 speakers.

  • Fatai Dabiri
  • Matt Tuff
  • Julia Belling
  • Charlie Warshawski

These were followed by the four evaluators.

  • Mark Peacock
  • Amanda Zwarts
  • Costa Nicolaou
  • Penny Williams

We are also able to release the speech by Charlie and his evaluation from Penny

After the guests were introduced, we had our break with tea, coffee and biscuits.

The second half is handed over to the table topics master. This gives the opportunity for stage time to those not already taken speaking roles, with an emphasis on encouraging our visitors to give a go. You need only speak for 1min up to 2min 30seconds, but, as I always warm people, that first 1 min seems to take forever!

It was great to see so many guests having a go and then all the participants were evaluated by our Topics Evaluator, John.

This then left the General Evaluation to cover everyone who had not yet been evaluated and we were pleased that our District Director, Florian Bay, agreed to do this for us, and to release this as a public speech.

Mark Returned to the stage as stand-in President to award the Ribbons and close the meeting.

Welcome 2020

What a great start to 2020.

Debra opened the evening as Sargent at Arms. She did an amazing job to welcome everyone and it was hard to believe this was only her second time in the role. She introduced Dave.

Our President Dave gave a great introduction with some notices, including the upcoming COT (Club officer training) which any current or prospective committee member will find useful and interesting.

The next person to the stage was out Toastmaster for the evening, Dan. He introduced his team for the evening;   Paul on the stopwatch, who explained the lights. Debra again, now videographer who told us how all speakers get a private link to their video for watching afterwards. Costa our brief ballot counter who counted.

Gillian had us all taking part in the warm-up and then Dan introduced the three speakers; John, Amanda and Matthijs. They were evaluated by Dave, James and Matt.

The biggest surprise for the night being that Matthijs’ speech was to deal with an unruly group when doing a presentation. It is not normal procedure to interrupt speakers, but this time it was required and our Toastmasters showed what a disruptive group they can be when given permission. (Did anyone work out where Costa has booked a holiday)

Debra closed out the first half by introducing our guests for the evening; Vanessa, Robin and JP.

The second half was passed to our Topics master Gary, who allowed people into a world of amazing ideas for the future; including who would you have for dinner and how would you suggest somebody visited London.  Great to see new visitors joining in and breaking the ice of their first time on stage. 

Charlie then wowed us with an eight-person evaluation of topics without a script. Although if you looked on his chair we had written out notes, but did not need them for his deliver!

Penny has the task, as the general evaluator to reprise the whole evening and this gave me a chance to check my notes of the evening matched hers!

Our President Dave closed off the meeting but not before handing our the ribbons for the evening.

  • Matthijs won the best speaker for surviving his heckled speech.
  • James had the best evaluation
  • Guest, Vanessa was voted the best table topics speech.

Thank you for everyone who came and all made some contribution to the night.