Every Friday the Waldorf School of Garden City High School gathers in the student room for the weekly Student Assembly that consists of (1) an extended speech by a senior on a topic of particular interest to them, and (2) the recitation of a poem, (either existing or original) by a junior. The Senior Speeches and Junior Poems are a rite of passage for Waldorf students and are a required part of the high school curriculum.
Friday, April 28th 2017
Gabrielle Martin took the podium first and delivered an eloquent speech about her love of theater and what it means to her. She began with a short story about her first starring role in a play that was a surprise to her and the audience. She explained how she was originally an ensemble member in a community theater production when she was suddenly needed to function as a replacement for one of the absent leads. This opening anecdote led to Gabi encapsulating the joys of acting in a single simple idea, acting allows her to express herself while also sharing the stories of others with the world.
While spending a summer at Berridge, a conservatory style theater program in Normandy, France, Gabi discovered a lot about herself. She explained how Berridge gave her many opportunities to both hone her acting skills and also develop herself personally. By participating in these theater workshops and performances, she began to appreciate not only the passion and emotion of the artists who wrote these stories, but also the crucial role of the performer in telling them. She grew to consider it her duty to put her all into every performance to ensure that these important stories are given the attention and respect they deserve. At her core, Gabi is an actor, and proud of it. We are also proud of her and wish her well as she studies at Middlebury College next year!
Isai Turcois began on an interesting note, by shredding his pre-written speech in front of the entire audience so that he could speak sincerely to his fellow classmates. Isai then framed his speech in the form of a story, sharing what he considered to be his own “character development” in the story of his life, pre and post Waldorf.
In a deeply personal speech, Isai shared how he remembered feeling like an outsider in his old school. As a sensitive and happy-go-lucky youngster, he became more introverted as he moved into middle school. However, his story took a positive spin after he began at the Waldorf School of Garden City. His outlook changed, he made new friends, he pushed himself to try to new things and he developed confidence. While he maintains that he still feels a bit socially awkward, he has grown to a place where he could deliver this speech in front of the entire High School with profound honesty and a little humor. His message was a simple one, no matter how hard things get, keep at it because things can always get better. We congratulate him on this momentous achievement! Isai is excited to be attending Molloy College in the fall.
Boris Epie Ntongo performed a live version of “Breath” by Daveed Diggs as his Junior Poem, impressing the audience with his passionate and sincere delivery of the piece. The refrain, “Breathe, let it out” was a particularly good message to send his classmates as they enter the college application process. A multi-talented student, Boris wowed us with his performance as Usnavi in the School’s production of In the Heights last March. Nice work Boris!