Speech “Iron Man” and Temporary Admission Freeze

Tuesday 23rd April 2019 by Sonja Bonin

My club keeps amazing me. Officials and members alike kept up the contest season momentum with a special speech marathon or rather: speech “iron man” as Nicola fondly called it, last night. 10 speeches, 10 speed evaluations of only 1 minute and an elaborate moderation by toastmaster of the evening Nicola von Lutterotti.
The line-up couldn’t have been more diverse and exciting, ranging from one very successful icebreaker to several impressive Pathways projects to some competent communication and advanced communication speeches such as a hilarious “roast” of another member by Margherita Brodbeck Roth.

Who would have thought that so much hard work and excitement could deliver so much fun in the end! Seems like our energy level just keeps on rising, even after we’ve just completed an extensive set of competitions this season.
Which reminds me: Chapeau to our club founder, Lesley Stephenson, and our acting president, Michelle Sabatini, travelling to Genoa to represent us at the District level!

Concluding our ultra-long speech night (which, by the way, will be repeated due to high demand, on May 14th!), Lesley addressed the elephant in the room: When she founded this club, she reminded us, it was with half of the original club’s 60 members – because the club had simply grown too large. It was time to split then, she said, and, given that we’ve just accepted our 62ndmember and had to impose a temporary admission freeze until fall, it might be time to split this one soon, too. Which would break our hearts, obviously, because we have all grown so fond of each other over the years.

Perhaps we can postpone that measure by adding repeated speech “ultras” in the future? Rumors have it our lovely and energetic club officials are already at work to implement just that …  so stay tuned!

Even more club visits!

Here are some other pictures of our club members expanding their Toastmasters experience and attending other clubs

Eric At Zug Toastmasters
Daniel at Winterthur Club

Contest Season

Contributed by Sonja Bonin, April 12, 2019

“Only the contest made me a poet, a sophist, an orator”, said Plato, one of the greatest thinkers in European history. If I may add my own humble experience: only the contest(s) made me a full member of the Toastmasters family.

For the second season now, I’ve had the privilege of taking part in some excellently organized TM competitions in and around Zurich. I’ve been a judge, a tie-breaking judge and a contest chair. I’ve served in more prominent (guest speaker) and more mundane roles (such as printing dozens of participation certificates). And I’ve heard some extraordinary people give some extraordinary speeches – in a hand-full of languages, I might add.

What impressed and inspired me most was how the clubs pulled it all off: with lots of preparation, energy and, most importantly, team-work.

One club that kindly invited me as a target speaker (Rhetorik Club Zurich) held their club contest AFTER and in addition to their regular meeting! My own club, Zuriberghosted not only their own club contest but also the area contest in SIX disciplines: German, International, Italian, French, Table Topics and Evaluations! An incredible feat which could only be accomplished because a seasoned bunch of people came together, prepared well (using some outstanding TM resources), and made it happen. It’s almost impossible to screw up if there’s so many kind people around you who have your back and take up the slack if needed.

I can highly recommend this experience. Start as a spectator tomorrow at the district level competition in Oerlikon (link to: roland.studer@bluewin.ch) and perhaps at the Spring District Conference in Genoain May or even the world championship in Denver, Colorado in August. And then step out of your comfort zone and start contributing: as a competitor or as an organizing team member or both.

I wish all Zurich competitors good luck and a lot of fun and learning along the way to Genoa. And I look forward to speaking in the next competition season in 2020. Who knows, maybe it’s going to turn me into a real poet, sophist, orator …? 

The Toastmasters Community

TM is not only about our club! This is why we are encouraged to visit our fellows Toastmasters from other clubs. Here Sonja pays a visit to the Turicum club, a German Speaking club from our area.

Sonja visiting the Turicum Club

Some special visitors….

On Tuesday 9th April, at one of our regular meetings we had the honour to be able to welcome two members of the Sarajevo Toastmasters club, that Zuriberg has assisted in founding. The two members, gave an insightful introduction to their club, their members and just a few of the many activities that they do in their club

Area Contest: 26th March 2019

On the 26th of March, Zuriberg organized and hosted the Area Contest: contestants from 4 clubs, help and support from 7 clubs, more that 50 members and guests. What an evening!

Winners of the German Contest
Winners of the International Speech Contest
Winners of the Evaluation Contest
Winners of the TT Contest
Winners of the Italian Contest

Table Topics Marathon 8th January

We started the year with an extra meeting: a Table Topic Marathon on the 8th of January!

Four extraordinary Table Topic Masters entertained us and made think hard for each of the 6 speakers. Their topics where funny and creative and they challenged the imagination of our speakers. Thanks to Peter, Nicola, Stefano O and Andre!

We also had the evaluations of Lesley, Roland, Sonja and Margherita, 4 experienced members who gave constructive feedback to the speakers of each Table Topic.
And finally 4 winners who started the New Year with the Toastmasters energy!

Bravo to Roland, Hicham, Margherita and Lesley! Well done!

Zuriberg Christmas Party 2018

Do you belong to the millions and millions of people around the globe who believe in astrology and who set their hopes for the New Year in an auspicious alignment of the stars? Or are you more of the scientific type, who believes in science instead, like our very own, brilliant toastmaster Tatyana Mishchenko?

Tatyana gave a hilarious, entertaining and thoughtful talk in celebration of our year-end party at TM Zuriberg. She conclusively proved how well the stars aligned with our Toastmasters club in 2018:

  • black holes colliding
  • new planets popping up
  • new galaxies forming
  • oddly shaped objects and a highly visible comet flying by the Earth
  • Jupiter being “upgraded” to planet status

And at the same time our club:

  • Welcomed many new members
  • Saw Hicham Adamou “upgraded” to Area Director
  • Hosted “flying by” Toastmasters from Japan and Qatar
  • Conducted a joint evening with the German-speaking Zurich Rhetorik Club (we can highly recommend this inspiring experience!)
  • Club officers resurfaced as active speakers (Nicola von Lutterotti and Sergey Sarykalin)
  • Left a trail on the international speaker stage (Lesley Stephenson)
  • and established new TM clubs (the Youth TM club, founded by Kyle Bullus, and the Credit Swiss TM, founded by Margherita Brodbeck-Roth in 2018).

There was also a lot of entertaining storytelling (Nicola von Lutterotti and Karina Castella), a story-reading (Sonja Bonin) and a fabulous, funny table topics session led by Kyle Bullus. 

Thank you and shout out to our beloved president, Michelle Sabatini, to Tatyana, Kyle and all contributors for making this a delightful, memorable evening! And Massimo for taking the photos

We look forward to an equally exciting new year at TM Zuriberg, starting with a special table topics marathon on January 8 (in addition to our regular meeting on January 15th)which should prepare us well for the club contest on February 26th!

Happy New Year to all Zuribergers, guests and all Toastmasters around the world!