Chloe led tonight’s meeting with a theme of “Broadway Shows.” Chloe introduced the topic with a question of the day, “Have you ever seen any Broadway shows? If so, which ones are your favorites?” Chloe talked about three of her favorite Broadway productions, which include Cats, Wicked, and Les Miserables. The first Broadway show Chloe saw was Cats, which she saw in college in Taiwan. It tells the story of a tribe of cats called the Jellicles, who decide which cat should go to a heaven-like place and come back to a new life. The musical includes the well-known song “Memory.”
The second Broadway show Chloe discussed was Wicked. Wicked is a retelling of the classic novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum. It tells the story of how the Wicked Witch of the West came to be and her unlikely friendship with Glinda, the Good Witch. Chloe mentioned that this was the first show she saw with her husband in New York, and that they both enjoyed it.
The third show Chloe talked about was Les Miserables, which is her favorite Broadway show so far. The story is an adaptation of Victor Hugo’s novel. It tells the story of Jean Valjean, a prisoner released after serving 19 years in jail for stealing a loaf of bread, and his struggles to start a new life in Paris. It is also the story of lower-class people in the 1800s and their search for freedom, democracy and equality. The show includes popular songs “I Dreamed a Dream” and “Do You Hear the People Sing?”
Kevin was our first speaker of the evening with his speech titled “Why is Math Useless?” Kevin’s focus on his speech was enhancing vocal variety. He started his speech with a question to hook his audience: “ How many times have you sat in the classroom, learning math, wondering when you will use this?” He then went into his speech, giving different examples of how math has a purpose in itself but holds no real-world value. He defined math as certain ideas and concepts that are consistently and provably correct. Kevin described how, unlike math, real-life situations can’t be fully correct all of the time. He brought up examples from his studies, such as learning about optimization and an introductory class on writing proofs, to prove his points. He wrapped up his speech discussing a professor who couldn’t explain real-world applications to the mathematical concepts being taught in the class. Great speech, Kevin!
Sheep was our second speaker of the night and she did her Icebreaker speech. Sheep introduced her speech with a question: “Have you ever jumped into cold water, especially if you never trained for it?” Sheep then said that she felt frantic in cold water and related it to a fear of public speaking. She mentioned that reading from a script was comforting to her, but didn’t help her accomplish much. Sheep then went into more of who she is as a person. She is the daughter of two scientists, and graduated college with a double major in math and electrical engineering. During that time she thought soft skills such as communication skills were unimportant, but later came to realize they were important. She experimented with a few jobs after college, and recognized the need for communication and leadership skills. These skills have proven to be important, especially now with her job as a Parkour coach. She is hoping that Toastmasters will help further develop her soft skills. Besides developing her communication and leadership skills, Sheep has many interests. She enjoys nature, the thrill of Parkour, hiking, gardening, foraging, and being outdoors. She has an eye for natural phenomena and enjoys art. Thank you for a wonderful first speech, Sheep!
Miguel was the night’s Table Topics Master with a series of questions related to musicals and acting: Do you like musicals? Why or why not?; What do you think is the hardest thing about acting?; If you could direct a play or musical, what would it be about?; Which of Shakespeare’s plays do you think are his magnum opus?; and, Why do you think songs in recent years don’t have melodies?
Our word of the day was resurrection, meaning the act of rising from the dead.
We had 13 attendees, including three guests. Thank you all for attending!