Ray Green Speaking Prize

Posted on March 22, 2021

The Ray Green Speaking competition is held each year for Year 11 & 12 students to speak on a specific topic. This year the prompt was “Caught in the crossfire” and we were blown away by the depth and passion of the speeches given by five of our brave students.

Ray Green attended The Friends’ School from 1925 to 1934 and was an active member of the Friends’ community. Ray keenly participated in the School Lecturette Competition and the Annual Literary society Competitions each year. Ray died in 1943 in a flying accident and, as a result, his parents established the Ray Green Memorial Prize for students who excelled in public speaking.

Left to Right: Andrew Gibson, Khushi Bhugwanadin, Hugh Magnus, Riley Curtain, Zoe Adams, Anna Reynolds and Darcy Webster-Jones.

This year we had five gifted students participate in the competition, each with their own perspective on the phrase “Caught in the Crossfire”.

Khushi Bhugwanadin gave a thoughtful speech about Freedom Fighters being “caught in the crossfire” or perhaps even catching others in their crossfire.

Darcy Webster-Jones spoke beautifully about divorce and how it catches children and innocent bystanders in the cross fire and offered some advice around being mindful of others in these situations.

Hugh Magnus spoke passionately, relating being caught in the crossfire to being without agency, discussing this concept in relation to Australia’s first nations peoples.

Runner-up Zoe Adams discussed victims of many different types of conflicts, from global conflict right down to local, personal conflicts.

Finally, our winner, Head Boy Riley Curtain, explored the phrase “Caught in the crossfire” and how it is often used (particularly in the media) to take focus away from the perpetrators of crime and violent acts. Riley’s speech was powerfully delivered and well-reasoned.

Thank you to our judges, Andrew Gibson and Anna Reynolds who had the difficult task of picking a winner and runner-up out of this amazing set of speeches.

Well done to all of our speakers for the 2021 Ray Green Speaking Competition. It can be very daunting to get up in front of a large group of your peers to speak, especially on such a broad and intricate topic.

You can watch Riley’s winning speech below:

Riley Curtain discussing “Caught in the Crossfire”