THE thought of performing solo and impromptu in front of a packed hall might seem nightmarish to some, but for a Warrnambool teenager the butterflies aren't a problem.
Tiffany Tracey has won over adjudicators at the City of Warrnambool Eisteddfod for seven continuous years, a feat believed never achieved before.
The bubbly Warrnambool College year 12 student simply takes one short breath and breaks into characters of known plays, recites poetry or spontaneously delivers an impromptu speech. With no props or offsiders she works to captivate her audience.
But it's not without months of practice, and an enjoyment for being on stage.
"I think nervousness comes when you're worried about the outcome. But I kind of just do it to enjoy it and I know I have practiced so there is nothing I should be worried about," Tiffany said.
Tiffany has won the speech eisteddfod, where entrants perform for up to six minutes multiple times, every year since she entered as a year six student. This year was her last at the competition and she won nine of her sections, and placed second in the remaining two.
"I set it as my goal every year," Tiffany said.
"It helps you grow, especially in impromptu speeches. It's hectic, they throw at you different things and test your ability to cope and deal with it."
This year she gave a speech on dual citizenship in the Australian Parliament, a topic she argued did not make politicians disloyal to Australia. She also played Masha from Christopher Durang's Vanya, Masha and Spike, a character she saw as "up herself" and a trait she'd normally shy away from.
Tiffany said she was drawn to the eisteddfod after watching others perform in primary school and she hoped her legacy would now inspire others to brave the stage.
"I remember when I was younger and I would see all the older kids do it, I was like 'I want to be like that when I grow up'," she said.
"People seeing it know they could do it too, and that they could work towards something like this.
"I hope I can inspire someone else to do speech as well."
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