SPECIAL OCCASION SPEECHES A Comprehensive Guide to Speaking on Special Occasions BASIC INFORMATION Prepared for a specific occasion and purpose The occasion influences the content of the speech Can be informative or persuasive, but the goal is to: Entertain an audience (banquets, awards dinners) Celebrate a person, place, or event (weddings, anniversaries, retirement parties, awards dinners) Commemorate a person, place, or event (anniversaries, memorials, funerals) Inspire (inaugural addresses, keynote speeches, commencement speeches) Set a social agenda (fundraisers, cause-oriented organizations, campaign banquets, conventions) TYPES OF SPECIAL OCCASION SPEECHES Speech of Introduction Focus on motivating the audience to listen to the upcoming speaker by: Establishing the speaker’s credibility by describing relevant facts about his/her background and qualifications for speaker Briefly describing the speaker’s topic and establishing its relevance to the audience Consider using quotes, short anecdotes, and startling statements to make the introduction compelling Keep remarks brief TYPES OF SPECIAL OCCASION SPEECHES Speech of Acceptance Focus on expressing gratitude for the honor bestowed upon you by: Letting the audience know what the award means to you Expressing yourself genuinely and with humility Thanking each of the relevant persons or organizations involved in giving you the award by name Acknowledging team players or others who helped you attain the achievement for which you are being honored If you know you are to receive an award or think you may be honored, prepare a speech in advance. TYPES OF SPECIAL OCCASION SPEECHES Speech of Presentation Focus on explaining the meaning of the award the reason it is being bestowed on the recipient by: Establishing the award’s credibility by explaining what it represents Explaining why the recipient is receiving the award. TYPES OF SPECIAL OCCASION SPEECHES Roasts and Toasts Focus on the persons being honored by the event by: (Roasts): preparing a humorous tribute to the person Even if you’re poking fun at someone, keep your tone good- natured and positive- remember your overall purpose is still to pay tribute to the honoree Do not embarrass the person being honored- this makes the situation awkward (Toasts): paying brief tribute to the person or event being celebrated Highlight what sets the person apart from others Preparing remarks in advance Rehearsing any jokes in advance of presentation TYPES OF SPECIAL OCCASION SPEECHES Eulogies Focus on paying tribute to the life of the deceased by: Staying in control of your emotions Focusing on the life of the person rather than the circumstances of his/her death Referring to family members of the deceased by name Emphasizing the person’s positive qualities TYPES OF SPECIAL OCCASION SPEECHES After-Dinner Speeches Focus on providing a balance of insight and entertainment by: Recognizing the occasion and linking the theme of your speech to it Avoiding stand-up comedy- use humor in a way consistent with your personality Keeping an eye on the audiences comfort, especially when addressing serious issues and causes TYPES OF SPECIAL OCCASION SPEECHES Inspirational Speeches Focus on uplifting the audience by: Appealing positively to the peoples’ emotions through vivid descriptions, emotionally charged words, repetition, alliteration, and parallelism Concentrating on creating positive speaker ethos ( character) Considering the use of real-life stories and examples. YOUR ASSIGNMENT Write and present a special occasion speech of your choice, except for speeches of presentation (those will be done next week!) Speeches should be a 2-5 minutes Prepare an outline typed, in MLA format to turn in on your presentation day (no works cited needed) RUBRIC Speeches will be worth 50 points. Each question is worth up to 5 points. CONTENT CONSIDERATIONS Was the speech prepared for a specific occasion/purpose? Was the topic appropriate and interesting? Was the language interesting and appropriate? Was speaker credibility built? DELIVERY CONSIDERATIONS Was eye contact maintained? Were vocal qualities appropriate and interesting? Were facial expressions supportive and varied? Were gestures and movements effective and varied? OUTLINE Was each component of the speech outlined? Was the speech typed in MLA format?
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