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Southland College Prep Charter High School placed first in the Illinois State High School Association (IHSA) State Speech tournament for the Performance in the Round event and took fourth place in Poetry Reading.
The school’s nine-member Performance in the Round group, which staged the African folk tale, “Anansi, the Spider,” placed first in the PIR event. The piece was originated by the Ashanti people of present day Ghana and over the years spread by oral tradition throughout Africa.
Kapri Echols, a Southland College Prep senior from Matteson, who placed first in the IHSA Chicago South Suburban Sectional competition in Poetry Reading with her rendition of "Life According to Motown," placed fourth in the State final tournament.
Performance in the Round cast members are: Angel Jackson, senior, Country Club Hills;
Dejah Morris, junior, Richton Park; Indya Gettings, sophomore, Matteson; Kassidy Hayslett, junior, Matteson; Kene Ifuze, junior, Richton Park; Keylin Sharkey, sophomore, Richton Park; Lisa Owens, junior, Matteson; Terrance Mayfield, sophomore, Richton Park and Tobias Davis, sophomore, Park Forest.
Student directors are: Janell Alexander, sophomore, Matteson; Jayden Posley, sophomore, Matteson and TaKiyah Brown, senior, Richton Park.
Earlier this winter, the Southland Performance in the Round team placed first in both the Chicago South Suburban Regional and Sectional events leading up to the State tournament.
Dr. Blondean Davis, Southland’s CEO, noted, “Winning a first place Illinois State championship in the Performance in the Round speech event is an extraordinary accomplishment. The Southland team performed this traditional folk-tale in English laced with credible African accents which they delivered flawlessly.”
“Participation in the IHSA State Final tournament is a significant accomplishment for this eight-year-old public charter high school, which is well on its way to establishing itself as a formidable speech and forensics contender. These results are a fine tribute to the strength and depth of our team led by Cheryl Frazier, Director of Forensics and Theater and coaches Lauren Wells, Alesha Alexander, Darius Leaks and Sharon Wingba,”
Dr. Davis said.