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Giving a fun speech

  1. Sep 12, 2009 #1
    What are some things you can say that will send chuckles across your audience when you give a speech, especially in the beginning to brake the ice?
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  3. Sep 12, 2009 #2


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    Either make up or quote something amusing that directly relates to the topic at hand. As a really rough example, say that your speach is about relativity. You could use the Einstein quote about 10 minutes sitting on a hot stove being much longer than 10 minutes sitting on a pretty girl's lap. That's a bad example, but you should get the idea.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2009
  4. Sep 12, 2009 #3


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    I always found that a little self deprecating humor, something that gave you commonality with the audience worked.
  5. Sep 12, 2009 #4


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    Tell them "It's great to be here, I remember the stench well".

    Wait nevermind.
  6. Sep 12, 2009 #5


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    The very worst speech I ever gave was one where I started with (what I thought was) a funny joke. So I made the joke...nothing. Total silence - chirp, chirp, chirp. It went south from that point...very bad.

    It's a very good idea to start with a joke, but if it fails...just be prepared for that. I really wasn't, and it killed me :blushing:.
  7. Sep 12, 2009 #6
    Know your limits as it relates to comedy. If you're comfortable - let it rip.

    If you're not sure - find your personal comfort zone and make sure you have an enjoyable time. The more relaxed you are - the more relaxed and receptive your audience will be (less critical too).

    If you attempt humor and bomb - accept that you're not Seinfeld and wow them with your specialty - that's why you're there. Deliver your technical speech with absolute clarity, focus, and professionalism and nothing else will matter.
  8. Sep 13, 2009 #7
    There are books on the topic of ice-breaking jokes. My father had one by Bennett Cerf.

    I came to speak tonight because you wanted to hear from an expert. You know, some people got it, and some people don't. Well, they tell me I'm full of it.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2009
  9. Sep 13, 2009 #8
    Walk up, unfold your speech, maybe shuffle around and get all ready to start the speech and everything, make sure everything is perfect for you to start (make sure to take a min on this), take a deep breath and look out over the audience and say "thank you, and have a good day!" and jokingly start to walk off.

    Gets 'em every time for me lol
  10. Sep 13, 2009 #9


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    That's when one says, "That's why the professional aptitude ruled out comedian. My choices are mortuary assistant or strategic arms negotiator."
  11. Sep 13, 2009 #10


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    This is EXCELLENT advice. There is nothing worse than listening to someone trying to tell jokes during a speech who really isn't good at telling jokes. If it doesn't come naturally, and you need to prepare the joke in advance, chances are that it won't go over well at all. Jokes work better if they are spontaneous, or at least sound spontaneous. If they sound rehearsed, usually all they get are groans, if not icy stares.

    Using gestures and tone of voice to convey enthusiasm for the topic of your speech is going to go much further toward keeping your audience's attention than trying to break the ice with a joke. You really don't need to break the ice in a speech. People are there to listen to you...all you need to do is deliver the speech on the topic they want to listen about.
  12. Sep 13, 2009 #11

    I remember someone giving a speech and said that he is an alcoholic and is hosting an AA meeting, everybody laughed.
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