A look into IHSSA at All-State
April 13, 2016
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Many students participate in Iowa High School Speech Association every year. IHSSA offers both large group and individual events. Students in many high schools across Iowa are given months to practice and rehearse their selected events, putting together a performance they hope will impress the judges for a 1 rating, moving them forward in the competition; from District, to State, to All-State. Numerous events made it to State, but only one made it to All-State – the One-Act play, Can’t Get There from Here.
“It’s a story about homeless youth in New York. Ms. Griffin wrote the play, which she adapted from a book. We pulled it together,” Ezra Halter, sophomore, said.
Halter’s sole event for IHSSA this year was One-Act. The piece got straight 1’s from the judges at State and was selected to join many other Iowa high schools’ events in performing at All-State.
“The biggest challenge was portraying multiple characters,” Halter said.
Sophomore Olivia Houchins-McCallum was in a musical theatre performance entitled Parade, and a choral reading performance. Teachers, students, and even some parents got to witness a sneak peek of the latter IHSSA event at the Student of All Seasons assembly. The choral reading group, minus Houchins-McCallum, performed a part of their piece, Beauty Is Not a Contest. The all-girl group put together their poems and writings about how everyone is beautiful, and we should recognize it instead of trying to make each other’s appearances into a contest.
“I love IHSSA because it strengthens the Hoover Drama community and we have a lot of fun competing,” Houchins-McCallum said.
Every year, the Hoover Drama department has a showcase night before competitions, where they perform their events in front of fellow students, friends, and family.
“I think we weren’t as prepared as we could’ve been, but we did our best and that’s what matters,” Katie Bickel, a junior who’s been in IHSSA for two years now, said about her performances at Showcase. Bickel was in 2 events this year – a musical theatre performance of Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, and The Rain, a short film.
“My favorite parts of IHSSA are meeting new people, learning new things, and watching other events… I think really anyone could do it, because there’s such a variety of events – something for everyone,” Bickel said.