After a competitive round of auditions, Year 11 student Ava Karanjavala was selected to represent the Royal High School at this year’s Crystall Carter Speech competition at Howell’s School, Cardiff, on Wednesday. It was an impressive day of speeches given to a large audience that included the whole of Year 10! She wrote and delivered a compelling presentation responding to Alexander McQueen’s assertion that “Fashion should be a form of escapism and not a form of imprisonment”. Ava gave a confronting, amusing and highly persuasive speech, covering everything from the punishing symbolism of the corset to Donald Duck’s bathroom etiquette. The judging panel were bowled over by her eloquence and sophistication, commenting how she balanced engaging entertainment with intelligent rhetoric, really connecting with the audience. Despite an outstanding performance, she narrowly missed out on first place to Oxford High School, whom we wish every luck in the final next week.