Auditions: Strictly Speaking

microphoneThe ABC has announced a new show built around public speaking: Strictly Speaking.

The half hour format, produced by Southern Star Entertainment, is currently looking for 27 Australians from all walks of life willing to face one of their greatest fears – public speaking.

Amanda Duthie, ABC Head of Arts and Entertainment, said: “If you have ever wanted to release the secret speaker that lurks inside you, this is your chance. Strictly Speaking aims to bring all the fun of dancing or cooking or singing to public speaking. So come to an audition and show us what you’re made of.”

Rory Callaghan, Managing Director, Southern Star Entertainment, said: “Strictly Speaking is a dynamic new entertainment format that’ll literally get everyone talking. Southern Star is delighted to be in partnership once again with ABC TV.”

Applicants need to be 16 years or older and a confident speaker. Australia-wide auditions will be held in August. The audition sounds tough: No umms, no ahhs!

Application forms are available at

Closing date for applicants is Friday 6th of August 2009.


  1. Had my audition in Sydney today. Agree with Kamilla that the environment was quite daunting inside. For me it was inside ABC Studio 21 in Ultimo. They seemed to like my prepared speech. They gave me 2x 1 minute impromptu topics, which went okay, but the nature of impromtu speaking is that you always think of better things you could have said afterwards! Took less than 10 minutes, then I was on my way!

  2. Could be interesting – apparently they are looking for judges at the moment and rumour has it one of them might be a World Champion of Public Speaking. Scary!!

  3. I think I’m a confident speaker, but I’m always a little anxious, particularly at the beginning. What a great opportunity to help viewers realise they can overcome what is considered one of our “greatest fears'”. It will be similar to the “biggest loser” showing overweight people they can lose weight or “dancing with the stars” showing those of us with two left feetthat they can learn a few steps. Well done to the abc

  4. Kamilla Zwolak

    I auditioned on Monday. It was a fantastic experience. It was under very unfamiliar conditions with a darkened room, cameras, mike and a few people behind two tables- yet they put me at ease and when it was Show Time- I took a big breath and went for it! I think they liked the mini speech. The impromptu topic was okay and I think it went fairly well- except for my ending- but that’s what it’s all about- thinking under pressure and delivering something with sense,structure and style. I don’t know how I was assessed, but I was glad to have had that amazing experience and opportunity. I encourage you to have a go!
    If you think you can talk- this is the show !

  5. I am a ‘ natural’ when it comes to Public Speaking. I do not use notes as I have an excelent memory. I supprised my own family when I gave a speach at my daughter’s wedding recently.
    Yours Sincerely,
    James Booth.

  6. I think this is a great idea. I believe I am a confident speaker in my work place and in a club I belong to but the thought of speaking on television in a contest absolutely terrifies me. I have put my application in and I hope to get an audition because I think this would have to be my biggest challenge ever.

  7. Because, the ABC caught on to the TV dancing craze early.

    Remember Strictly Dancing a few years back?

    If Strictly Speaking succeeds, we may have “Speaking with the Stars”, “So You Think You Can Speak” and lots of imitators…

  8. “in this TV reality competition, contestants tackle what for most people is their greatest fear: public speaking.”

    I think the idea is that because most people find public speaking scary, they are looking for people that can do the whole public speaking thing. Not the other way around…

  9. what the hell? They want applicants to be confident speakers, yet they also want them to be afraid of speaking….is that the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard of what?

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