PHOTOS: Bree snags Eisteddfod trophy for gay marriage speech
BREE Roberts was shocked when she won the trophy for her speech about the postal survey on marriage equality.
At yesterday's session of the 47th Gladstone Eisteddfod, choral speaking, character recitals, poetry, prepared miming and prepared speeches were the order of the day.
Bree has been performing since she was eight years old - despite a stutter.
She said it was really difficult to find a topic for the Eisteddfod that wouldn't be offensive to anyone.
But, taking her own advice, she decided "people should just be able to express themselves".
She chose the topic of the same-sex marriage postal plebiscite.
"Friends made me realise (being gay) is not something to be ashamed of," she said.
"I (thought), I may as well tell everyone.
"I honestly don't think they will change (the Marriage Act) though. It looks like I'm going to (have to) go to Canada to get married."
Bree said allowing people of the same sex to get married would not change society.
"People are still going to view it the same way," she said.
"If anything changes, it'll be there's lots of weddings. Your house prices will not rise."
Bree is studying a Certificate III in hospitality and plans to go into nursing.
She said her own experience of "being in and out of hospital these last few years made me appreciate what (nurses) do".
Eisteddfod starts strong
Sticky stages, forgetting ther lines and stage fright were some of the hurdles faced by young performers yesterday.
Bella Hurworth and Quinn Brennan, Year 9 students at Toolooa State School said it was all worth it though, as it gave them lots of time with their friends.
Quinn is performing in 14 categories this year.
"I just really enjoy doing it ... it's also a challenge," she said.
Quinn writes and recites her own poetry, drawing from important themes in her life: "Boys, parents, teenage kind of stuff," she said.
"It's like an escape when you're on stage."
It runs in the family - her mother Mary-Anne also recites her own poetry.
Bella agreed theater allowed her to "just break free".
"It's a way for you to get heard," she said.
Both girls were looking forward to the awards ceremony during the evening.
Bella had already been asked for a call-back, so she knew she was up for something.
The next Eisteddfod program kicks off on Saturday at the Gladstone Entertainment Convention Centre and will feature dancing.