High standard of talent in speech and drama category
PROMISING entertainers showcased their talents on stage this week, for the speech and drama category of the 43rd Gladstone City Eisteddfod.
The extravaganza started at the Gladstone Entertainment Centre Marina Marquee on Sunday morning and finished on Wednesday evening, fittingly with a lot of laughs, at an awards presentation.
It was two 16-year-olds, who took out the coveted $500 bursaries - Hannah Gregory was awarded the most outstanding female local performer GLNG Bursary and Daniel Kempson was awarded the most outstanding male local performer Boyne Smelters Bursary.
Both Hannah and Daniel take speech and drama lessons with Elizabeth Jones.
Tannum Sands student Daniel was surprised by his win, which came after he won a bursary in the dance category of the eisteddfod earlier this year. Daniel has been performing in the eisteddfod for four years (three years in the speech and drama category).
The dedicated dancer and comedy aficionado hopes to pursue a career in the creative arts.
Gladstone student Hannah has competed in the eisteddfod for the past six years, entering as many categories for the speech and drama category as possible this year.
"I enjoy everything; it's just the thrill of being on stage," Hannah said.
With a desire to forge a career in international relations, Hannah hopes practicing public speaking will set her up well for her future pursuits - but in the meantime, said it was simply great fun.
Gladstone Eisteddfod Association publicity officer Dulcie Benn was impressed by the high standard of performances this year.
And she said there were many benefits in competing.
"Participants learn to have poise and self-confidence, which they find helpful in all areas of their lives," she said.
There is much more to come in the eisteddfod and although Ms Benn said "there were quite a lot of friends and relatives there" during the speech and drama category, she hoped the community would come out and support the region's talent in the upcoming sections.
"We've just got to get the word out there and encourage more people to attend," Ms Benn said.
The vocal category will run from Sunday until Tuesday.
The instrumental category will run from October 27 to 30.