Speech and Thespian season has started at Pella High School. There have already been some practices, and there are over 80 students that have signed up. The two coaches this year are Suzanne Jones and Ashlee Whittington.
There are many categories within group and individual events. The group events are: One Act, Ensemble Acting, Radio Broadcasting, Television News, Short Film, Group Improv, Group Mime, Solo Mime, Musical Theatre and Reader’s Theatre. The individual events are: poetry, prose, literacy program, acting, solo musical theatre, storytelling, improvisation, public address, expository address, reviewing, original oratory, after dinner speaking, spontaneous speaking and radio news announcing. Many students have re-enrolled in Speech Team. Junior Caroline Henry has been in Speech for three years.
“I am in musical theater, and I’m really excited because I want our group to do well,” said Henry.
For freshmen, this is their first year that they can enroll.
“I am in the short film category this year and will be working with other freshmen on creating a short film,” said freshman Jack Stratton. “I wanted to join speech team because of this category.”
One of the categories one can participate in is One Act. One Act is a mini play that lasts around 30 minutes. You are allowed to use props and costumes. Using props and costumes aren’t allowed for any other speech team event. This year the One Act is a comedy about Greek mythology, and there are around 30 students in the One Act. The practices have started for One Act, as well as for Reader’s Theater.
Junior Brenna Hildebrand said, “I was not in One Act last year, but this year I’m only in One Act besides the monologues I am preparing for the Thespian Festival. I’m really excited because you get to use props and costumes. I like it so far, and I really like who I am with.”
This year there are many seniors on the team. Most of the seniors have been in Speech for all four years of high school. This being their last year, many are reminiscing about previous years.
Senior Chandler Jahner says, “I will miss all of the crazy practices and awesome teammates that I have had the privilege to work with for the past 4 years.”

The competition days for the Speech Team are:
January 21, 2017- District Large Group
February 4, 2017- State Large Group
February 18, 2017- All-State Festival Large Group Events
February 25, 2017- District Individual Events
March 11, 2017- State Individual Events
March 27, 2017- All-State Festival Individual Events
All City Speech Night- January 26th

•Tiffany Van Gilst,