Commemorative Speech: Characteristic, Scope, And The Best Topic Examples

A commemorative speech (also ceremonial or epideictic) is a style of talking inherent to ceremonies, significant cases, celebrations, and special events. It relates to one person or a group of people. Its aim is paying tribute, expressing gratitude towards a person, community, establishment, occasion, thing, or even an idea. An orator is supposed to touch the hearts and souls of the people, inbreathing them for good times.

The Purpose and Characteristic of a Commemorative Speech

Although this type of speech includes various details, it is strictly different from the informative speech. The last one transmits the facts, while a commemorative speech transmits admiration. It is rather about feelings, upraised emotional state, and sentiments. Senseless achievements numerating is inappropriate for ceremonial speech.

Speaking a beautiful language is vital for epideictic presentation. Some speeches go down in history for their meaningful silver-tongued expressions. So the fundamental purposes of a commemorative speech are:

  • inspiring the listeners for a positive future and circumstances;
  • awaking their senses;
  • getting people motivated about a person, case, cherished desire, or general idea;
  • expressing your personal feelings soulfully.

In simple phrases, this performance should unite the community, remember the good,  treasure the past times, and long for the best.

Graduation Speech Is a Prime Example of a Commemorative Speech

Most students in different countries of the world receive a task to write a commemorative speech for the graduation official part. Alumni are supposed to express their appreciation to the studying establishment staff, grant givers, relatives, friends for the financial maintenance, life experience, knowledge, and other participation.

Being chosen to speak at the commencement podium is an honor. Usually, the most successful pupils or the most charismatic representatives of the class get this opportunity. It is a responsible task to share the most precious memories, the received wisdom, or humorous cases that accompanied the studying process. 

The requirements are general for all graduates, but each one wants to sound the most remembering, pronounce an astonishing commemorative speech, not allowing the audience to yawn. 

It is hard to put all the studying years into a few sentences. Therefore, students follow the commemorative outline template, working hard to produce a catchy and sparkling speech performance. 

Students usually express their creativity at the maximal level to develop their original styles. They write spoken-word poetry, use funny jokes, etc. But the most crucial element to make people listen to you is being yourself and telling your thoughts honestly.

What Determines a Good Topic for a Commemorative Speech?

To decide whether the theme is suitable for ceremonial speech or not, you should estimate the presented information, audience of listeners, and emotions that a specific event calls. 

A good topic should start with a significant aspect of the subject, demonstrating the value of a person or activity. It should catch attention immediately and call agreement sensations. So the beginning must include the information about a person or a group, a place, an occasion.

Next, it should reason the value of a person or the case (answer the «Why» question):

  • Why does he, she, or it deserve the honor?
  • Why is it meaningful now?

Mentioning contribution, accomplishment, other merits will emphasize the significance of the spoken leader or special event. Substantiate it with evidence: who do you benefit and for what reason? What does it mean to the listeners?

Highlighting that these distinct merits have an overall meaning and not relating to one person or a small group of people would sound spectacular. Link the achievements to the generally accepted moral rules, preferences, beliefs to demonstrate their global meaning. That is the path to the hearts of your listeners. Extracting the lessons from the experience or exemplary behavior of a person is highly appreciated. 

As with any speech, a commemorative one should end with summarizing. That should be the entirely empathic part of the performance where an orator discloses personal feelings and thoughts. Sharing them with the audience, picturing them with a short story, mentioning personal experience related to the person or case is symbolistic. Complete a whole picture with positive feelings, respect for the opportunity to express your thoughts in public, and share the happy moments with those who came.

The topic is successful when an elegant language is appropriate, remaining an orator serious. An open-minded speech without exaggeration is the top quality.

The Best Topic for a Commemorative Speech: Examples and Recommendations

If you need an idea for the best ceremonial speech, you can use the one from the list:

  • prominent figure;
  • strong personality;
  • gratitude to parents;
  • history of a device;
  • the fight for civil right;
  • modesty and its place in egoistic society;
  • feminist movement;
  • space development;
  • tribute to sports champion;
  • praising religious values;
  • ecology volunteering;
  • the purest example of human braveness;
  • being a teacher is a holy mission;
  • freedom is a priceless feeling;
  • the meaning of expectations;
  • industrious person;
  • compassion to poor people;
  • the most loyal example of personality;
  • veterans and their heroism;
  • dreams are the driving engine of movements;
  • the value of patriotism.

Also, you may consider the commemorative speech topics with less weighty content depending on the case:

  • the price of the reward;
  • the first day in the college is legendary;
  • the most talented hairstylist;
  • retirement is a leisure time to have fun;
  • toast for a wedding.

When you choose the best commemorative speech topic, follow your sensations. 

Any audience appreciates sincerity, detecting actors immediately. Dishonesty ruins the impression. Leaving the listeners to feel dull or moody is the worst mistake ever. Do not perform artificial enthusiasm either. A speech that sounds unnatural can not pretend for success.    

Since a ceremonial speech refers to emotional boosting, use powerful words and evidence.  Emphasize the emotive sense instead of letting emotions rule you. Reaching the balance in the conversation may appear to be a challenge. But if you describe your private position with a feeling that will not cause any trouble. So choosing the topic that allows you to be sensitive yet control your emotions is crucial.

Exclude the monotonous declamation. Engage your audience, sparkling and touching the inner strings of their souls. To arrange this, a preliminary investigation is necessary. Find out who will be the listeners? Why will they gather? 

Perhaps, it would be worth knowing something about their background too.

It matters if you intend to add a joke to your commemorative speech, for instance. Make sure that it will not call a repellent reaction. If you plan a serious topic, focus on the circumstances that join your audience, the thought that bothers or interests them all. 

Observing many examples of the speech, remain original. Remember that your case relates to you personally and people who have come. Express your excitement genuinely and brilliantly. That is your guarantee to be remembered and appreciated.

The Final Insight

Commemorative speech is not an easy thing since it is always addressed to a great audience. You should consider many factors to create a good speech. Thus, while thinking about them, try to free your mind from all the problems. Concentrate on the speech only. Check it twice after finishing. That is the way to make your speech outstanding!