Forensics speech team begins 2002 season
Three members of the Blair forensics team qualified for a large county tournament in May.
Senior Eric Schaffer won second place in the category of serious prose. Senior Amanda Way won fourth place for children's literature, and sophomore captain Abigail Fraeman won fifth place in serious poetry and first place in humorous interpretation.
Other Blair competitors at the tournament were Sophomores Elizabeth Finn and Anahita Karimi. Having three finalists already qualified for the final tournament is a "wonderful accomplishment," said sponsor social studies teacher Cassandra Heath.
Only five members of the team competed on November 9, since others were involved in the Blair play, Charley's Aunt.
All of the Blair finalists had competed in competitions last year, but neither Schaffer or Way have placed in tournaments before. Fraeman placed into the county tournament last year in serious poetry and humorous interpretation, and won sixth place at the Montgomery County Forensics League Championships for her serious poetry piece.
Schaffer describes this tournament, his third, as "tough" but "fun." He thinks the reason he placed during this particular tournament was due to his choosing a more "exciting and upbeat" piece: The Green Door by O. Henry.
According to Heath, momentum for the club was growing during the first three meetings of the year, but the strength of the club was disrupted by the sniper shootings and is only now regaining strength. Way describes Blair's success as a "good surprise" after the disruption to practices. She said that some of the other competitors reflected the amount of chaos caused by the sniper. "A few did really great but the other girl just stood there and read, and I'd never seen that before. So, I guess everyone was a little off," said Way.
The growing strength of the team will be even more important in the next two qualifying tournaments in February and because competition appears to be growing. According to Heath, the November 9 competition was the largest in her memory. Magruder High School's team alone brought about 30 members. "Magruder came back in force and it looks like they brought their entire theatre department," commented Heath.
Forensics, not to be confused with the study of cadavers, is made up of eleven different categories; children's literature, serious dramatic interpretation, ensemble acting, extemporaneous speaking, humorous interpretation, informative speaking, persuasive oratory, serious interpretation, serious prose interpretation, and readers' theatre. Most speeches are between five and ten minutes long and, except for readers' theatre and ensemble acting, performed alone.
All students who volunteer for the team are admitted, and the team is proud of its wide range of ages and experience. Heath attributes the growing number of club members to the joint enthusiasm of senior captain Danielle Prados, and sophomore captain Fraeman.
The forensics team meets alternating Wednesdays and Thursdays at 3:00 in room 264.
Annie Peirce. Annie Peirce is a senior in the Communications Arts Program and the public relations manager for Silver Chips. She is also an opinions editor for Silver Chips Online. She was born on October 25, 1984, in a hospital somewhere in Prince George's County; but doesn't … More »