Festival of Speech

History of Festival of Spech

The concept of a Festival of Speech for AHIGS was first mooted in the early 1990's by Mr Chris Faisandier, then Principal of Kincoppal - Rose Bay and member of AHIGS.

As Principal of Sacred Heart College in New Zealand, Mr Faisandier was involved with the O'Shea Shield Competition in which about twenty schools from the lower North Island of New Zealand participated.

The purpose of the O'Shea Shield Competition was to encourage students to develop skills in the areas of public speaking, debating, analysis and rhetoric. So popular was the Competition and so high was the standard of presentation, that the winners of the O'Shea Shield were often featured on New Zealand television.

With the support of the AHIGS membership, Mr Faisandier established the Festival of Speech (then known as the Independent Girls Schools Speaking Competition) in NSW in 1996. The inaugural Festival, spanning Friday evening and all day Saturday, was hosted by Kincoppal - Rose Bay and attended by some fifteen schools.

Today the Festival continues to be hosted annually by an AHIGS member's school. Some twenty seven schools now participate and students have the opportunity to perform in the areas of drama, debating, poetry, prose readings, current affairs and religious and ethical questions. The Festival is open to girls from years seven to eleven and offers an important focal point for skill development, personal expression, teamwork and friendship.

During the past twenty years the following schools have hosted Festival of Speech:
1996 - Kincoppal - Rose Bay, 1997 - MLC School, 1998 - Queenwood, 1999 - St Catherine's, 2000 - Pymble Ladies' College, 2001 - Santa Sabina, 2002 - Kincoppal - Rose Bay and Kambala, 2003 - Abbotsleigh, 2004 - Kambala and Kincoppal - Rose Bay, 2005 - MLC School, Santa Sabina and Kambala, 2006 - PLC Sydney, 2007 - St Catherine's, 2008 - Meriden and Santa Sabina, 2009 - Loreto Kirribilli, 2010 - Meriden, 2011 - Abbotsleigh, 2012 - Ravenswood, 2013 - PLC Sydney, 2014 - OLMC, 2015 - Wenona, 2016 - Abbotsleigh

Festival of Speech 2017
Saturday, 21 October 2017
Masons Dr
North Parramatta


In 2017 Festival of Speech will be hosted by Tara Anglican School for Girls https://www.tara.nsw.edu.au/.
Students should plan to arrive at Tara at least 30 minutes prior to the event in which they are participating. They should then register at a location to be advised and proceed to their section venues which will be listed in the Programme. Students are responsible for getting to their event on time and lateness may preclude participation.

Parents and spectators are welcome at Festival however will not be permitted to enter events during a presentation. Please wait until the presenter has finished and enter quietly before the next presentation has commenced.

It is expected that sections will conclude by  5 pm on Saturday. Presentation ceremonies will take place at the conclusion of each section.

We are grateful to Tara's Principal, Mrs Susan Middlebrook and her staff for hosting Festival of Speech 2017, with special thanks extended to the girls of Tara who will be volunteering their services to assist on the day. We wish good luck to all the participating schools and students and welcome  our country schools who will be travelling long distances to join us on the day.

If you have any questions please don't hesitate to contact AHIGS on 9888 9477.