Congratulations are in order for Yui Hang Cheng of 8P1 and his back-to-back successes at the Hong Kong Schools Speech Festival, one of the most widely participated inter-school competitions in Hong Kong.
This year Yui Hang took part in the 67th Speech Festival and came first place for the third time in four years.
There is a wide variety of texts candidates may read, including ancient and modern poetry; reciting a Mandarin poem chosen by the Hong Kong Schools Speech Festival Association off by heart, our speech-making champion scored highly in fluency and expression.
“Whenever I look back at the various achievements I have made in the Speech Festival,” the three-time first-place winner said, “I smile at myself.”
Unsurprisingly, he is a speaker of not just one but three languages: Mandarin, English, and French. He attributes his success first and foremost to being taught Mandarin by his grandfather for seven years.
His strategy for winning the competition time after time and taking his adversaries by storm? “I had prepared by having multiple Chinese lessons a week which enabled me to recite the poem more fluently and add in several methods to attract my audience, including the adjudicators. Moreover, I practised several times at home when the competition was approaching.”
When asked about how he was feeling on the day he had to perform, the modest prizewinner remarked that he has always felt somewhat nervous. “I was shocked,” Yui Hang recalled, “and surprised when I first won the competition around four years ago.”
The competition also gave him an opportunity to truly realise his potential in Mandarin speech in front of an audience. Yui Hang encouraged other students to participate, saying, “It was through these experiences that I learned how to speak Mandarin more fluently and expressively.”
Likewise, competing and triumphing against other students gave him his first real taste of success and awakened his hunger for more. It has inspired him to “continue working towards things [he has] already started on, to achieve success that will last [his] entire life.” He intends to partake in the Festival up until he leaves secondary education.
“We’re really proud of you,” Mr. Morris praised. “Everyone was very pleased; you mustn’t be shy about it—so very well done!”
His next competition, in which he will hopefully emerge victorious, takes place at the end of this year. Good luck, Yui Hang!