Young actors across the Border and North East felt dismayed when this year's Albury Wodonga Eisteddfod had to be cancelled last month, just before it opened.
But, you know, the show must go on.
And so the speech and drama component has been reborn into a new competition planned for August 24 and 25 under the auspices of the Australian Guild of Music and Speech.
Border speech and drama teacher Jan Skinner, who co-ordinates this discipline for the annual eisteddfod, approached the guild for support.
Ms Skinner said with all of the entrants in the border bubble and a Wagga adjudicator willing and able to travel to Albury, she didn't want the performers to miss out.
"Mainly for the work they had done, " she said.
"They needed the opportunity to perform and do it and show their confidence.
"You can't get them ready and then say, 'Oh no, it's not on'."
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More than 200 entries have been received from six years and under to open, with many competitors tackling multiple sections.
The disciplines include Australian and Shakespearean recitals and prepared mimes.
Starcia McNulty, 16, said she was pleased to have another chance to perform after the eisteddfod was called off.
"I was super disappointed because we put a lot of work into it," she said.
"I really like competing against other people and showing off our talents and performances, because it's a great way to express yourself, emotionally and visually."
Dexter Horne, 10, also looked forward to the new competition.
"I like acting, you get to sometimes play a role of a different character and that's what I really like," he said.
The speech and drama competition is scheduled to be held in the Albury Entertainment Centre theatrette over two days, adhering to COVID requirements.
Ms Skinner said learning drama helped build confidence in public speaking.
"All through life you need it, and you need to be able to do it," she added.
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