By Mehvash Khan
Every Saturday till Nov. 17th (the big day!) the TEDxYouth@Winchester speakers and hosts meet to practice for the main event, under our trainers Rohan Roberts (Organiser) and Lara Matossian (Co-organiser)
Our first TEDx training session was a grueling yet fun-filled affair. We began our day with fresh donuts and rolls thanks to the ever-so wonderful Lara. The air was thick with anticipation as one by one we were called up to deliver our talks (without any cue-cards!) along with our presentations. Luckily the tension was broken once Sidharth Siva arrived! A professional photographer based in Dubai, Sid was here to click group and individual photos of our TEDxYouth@Winchester group. The excited group of girls (and one boy- Jamal!) filed into the secondary library, the perfect venue for our ‘photo-shoot’. Half an hour passed and we were busy shifting sofas and bookshelves around, getting into position for the perfect group shot. Sid was surprisingly patient with us – heaven knows how a bunch of girls getting their photographs taken can be! About 50 takes later, our cheeks sore from all the smiling and backs stiff from holding our ‘positions’, we finally got our perfect picture, smiles, X’s and all. (see above)
We then resumed our training downstairs, whilst a few of us were called up in groups of 3’s to get our individual portraits taken.
Listening to every speakers’ talk was truly inspiring – each of us with a completely different topic, but linked with the central theme: Ideas that can change the world.
Of course, not everyone’s talk was perfect. Our trainers doled out constructive criticism, praising us when deserved and pointing out minor changes that need to be made to our presentations or speeches. More than being nervous, it was clear that all the speakers were incredibly excited and proud to be where they were- training for our very first TEDx event!
Meanwhile, the photoshoot going on upstairs was a riot. We each held a block of the letter ‘X’ and delivered a whole range of quirky poses with it; Sid made each and every one of us feel like a profession model! The photos came out great, promoting the X from TEDx (which stands for independently organized event).
All in all, the first training session was a huge success. Every speaker gained useful tips on how to improve their talks, create the perfect presentation for a TEDx event, and remain confident and excited while delivering the talk of your life. In the coming weeks energy levels will soar as we get closer to the main event- our schedules are jam-packed with preparation but we could not be any happier!