Many congratulations to Year 12 student at Norwich High School for Girls, Saanvi Shenoy, who came second in the awarding ceremony of National Finals of the Cranmer Awards at Liverpool Hope University on Saturday, 25th February 2023.
Mr Emerson-Moering, Head of Philosophy and Religion at Norwich High School for Girls commented: “The Cranmer Awards is an annual competition organised by the Prayer Book Society in which competitors recite passages of the 1662 Book of Common Prayer for the purpose of promoting the beauty of the readings and as part of British cultural history. The participants benefit by gaining the skills of public speaking and bringing to life the readings whose contents have inspired many generations of people. We are very proud that our Sixth Form student Saanvi is amongst the winners of this prestigious competition.”
Saanvi added: “On Saturday we made our way to Liverpool Hope University where the Cranmer Awards were held. It was really nice to meet the other contestants before heading into the auditorium to speak and at the beginning everyone was definitely a little nervous! However, each person gave a really good performance and it was enjoyable to hear them all speak so wonderfully, although it certainly made the judges’ job harder.
“I found that performing was not as nerve racking as I had made it out to be in my head and that’s why I would definitely recommend the Cranmer Awards to anyone wanting to improve their public speaking, as it’s a great midpoint between a full speech to a large audience and simply reading out something to a group of people, as you had to memorise the piece and use techniques like emphasis and pausing along the way.
“Participating in the Cranmer Awards was a great experience particularly because I was able to learn and perform a completely different style of public speaking. I practiced Psalms 12, 13 and 15 weekly with Mr Emerson and when I first began I quickly realised that this type of performance was not simply a recital, but a portrayal of the true meaning behind the Psalms. After learning more about the Psalms and their origin I was able to better understand the story behind them, which allowed me to convey the meaning more sincerely.
“I found that the key difference between the Cranmer Awards and other public speaking is the fact that it has to be emotional, but at the same time not dramatic, and this was definitely a challenge when rehearsing. I managed to overcome it by practice and the most important thing I learnt was the value of letting your own personality shine through whenever you speak as it is easy to see through any pretenses people may sometimes put up.”