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Returning State Champion Excels on Speech Team By Allison Millette and jared schmitt

There’s a champion at Walpole High, and she does not play sports. Emily Tomasetti, a Walpole High School sophomore, took home the title of State Champion in Play Reading at the 2017 States Speech Finals.

Emily was a Freshman at the time, making it her first year on the Walpole High School Speech and Debate team. Although public speaking is one of the number one fears in America, she says she wasn’t intimidated by performing in front of a room of other people. Tomasetti has been acting since a young age, which made her interested in joining the team.

“I knew a lot of the people already and it seemed like it was up my alley and I wanted to improve my public speaking skills,” Tomasetti said.

Tomasetti as Alice in Walpole Children Theater's 2016 production of "Dorothy in Wonderland." Photo from Lindsey Patterson

Her speech titled "The Good Times Are Killing Me" by Linda Barry, follows a young girl who is exposed to more than one upsetting circumstance, and demonstrates her perspective on this as a young child. She says she has almost always played a younger character, which made developing and believably delivering the piece easier. Emily’s piece is one that was familiar with other members of the team.

“I had seen her piece several times. I actually cut it and competed with it at a tournament the year before. So it was really amazing to see how far she took the piece and what an incredible job she did with it,” said Speech and Debate Team President Ellen Irmiter.

Along with the Speech Team Tomasetti also participates in the Walpole High School Drama Club, as well as the Walpole Children’s Theatre. She has been a part of multiple productions and still continues to compete on the Speech Team.

Emily as Gillian Ravenscroft in a 2017 student directed play "Ravenscroft." Photo by Samantha Simons.

This year she hopes to venture into a more demanding event, Dramatic Performance. This event is similar to Play Reading but will add new tests, such as not having a binder to read from during her performance. Her piece this year is entitled "Room", and yes, she is playing another child. Emily is progressing forward with a positive outlook, hoping to do well as she enters a more challenging event. She says she is not as comfortable in Dramatic Performance, but is still excited to see what she can accomplish with a new piece and a new event.

“Emily’s passion for acting and her incredible work ethic contribute to how well she does.” Said Irmiter, “She is so expressive and cares so much, and that really comes through when you watch her perform.”

Emily (bottom right) with the other members of the Walpole Speech Team after her win. Photo from Walpole Speech Team.

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