IELTS Speaking Test Sample #29

IELTS Speaking Sample #29

Part One - Introduction

[The examiner asks the candidate about him/herself, his/her home, work or studies and other familiar topics.]

Your country:

Q. Which part of your country do most people live in?
Answer: Population around my country is pretty much evenly spread since it mostly has a flat landscape. However, if one was to ask this question purely for “academic” purpose, I would say that the northern part of my country, along with the adjacent areas to our capital city, is home to most of the people in my country.

Q. Tell me about the main industries there.
Answer: My country is a semi-industrialized nation with major industries like agro-food processing industries, garments industries, fish industries, coal industries and tea-producing industries. However, we also have some minor industries, operating on a limited scale, like food packaging industries and motorbike manufacturing industries.

Q. How easy is it to travel around your country?
Answer: I would say that it is really easy to travel around my country whether one wants to travel by roads, railways or air. We also have a considerably large network of ferries through which people can transport themselves through the major rivers which are crisscrossing pretty much all over my country.

Q. Has your country changed much since you were a child?
Answer: I would say that my country has changed significantly for better, since I was a child, especially in terms of quick economic development and building better roads and infrastructures. My country has improved significantly also in terms of incorporating modern technologies in our lives. Finally, my country also has witnessed a notable increase in its population since I was a child.

Part 2 - Cue Card

[The topic for your talk will be written on a card which the examiner will hand you. Read it carefully and then make some brief notes.]

Describe a well-known person you like or admire.

You should say:

  • who this person is
  • what this person has done
  • why this person is well-known

and explain why you admire this person.

[You will have to talk about the topic for one to two minutes. You have one minute to think about what you are going to say. You can make some notes to help you if you wish.]

Sample Answer 1:

The song ‘High Hopes’ vocalized by David Gilmour of Pink Floyd music band is a piece of music I have always admired, and would perhaps listen to often for the rest of my life. Pink Floyd is famous for its progressive and psychedelic music and high-quality lyrics. And this particular song falls under the progressive rock genre, and was the 11th song on the album ‘Division Bell’.

I usually listen to this song on my laptop computer, and sometimes, on my MP3 player with a headphone attached to it. In fact, I am a great fan of Pink Floyd and most of their songs are on my favorite list. This song is specifically attractive for the great music composition, lyrics and theme.

This special song reminds us of our past, specifically young age, and compares how it was filled with possibilities and dreams. The background church bell music and the lyrics make an “out of the world illusion” that only people who have listened to it and enjoyed it would realize. Every time I listened to this song, I can feel my childhood, the sweet memory and the greener town I used to live in. This is the song that opens the horizon for me to visit my glorious childhood and teenage time. I love this song from the bottom of my heart.

This music puts me in a sad yet charming mood. I feel sad that the past days won’t be coming back and I won’t have that childhood charm anymore. On the other hand, this song gives me a genuine pleasure of the memories of my childhood and all the friends and people I knew then. It also inspires me to enjoy my present days as those days would become good memories someday.

Sample Answer 2:

I have always loved listening to music – good music that is – because I consider them to be the food for my heart and mind. Anyway, while I like to listen to music from all kinds of genre, I prefer soft rock the most, and today I would like to talk about one such music which I have loved since the day I heard it for the first time.

The song, I am talking about, is titled “I Just Can’t Stop Loving You” which was sung in 1987 by the legendary singer Michael Jackson. It is actually a ballad duet of Michael Jackson and Siedah Garrett, and was the first single released from his seventh album, “Bad”. The song was written by Jackson, and co-produced by Jackson and Quincy Jones. Later, this song reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100, RB Singles and Adult Contemporary charts, making it the first in a string of 5 number-one single.

This song became so popular that Michael Jackson and Siedah Garrett recorded a Spanish as well as a French version of this song. Anyway, after listening to this song for the first time, I recorded it on audio cassette before almost 15 years ago and since then, hardly a week goes by when I don’t listen to this song at least once. This is such a piece of mild and soft music with such a great tune that every time I listen to it, I feel like I am taken to a world of dream where there is no sadness or cruelty.

This is one of my favorite pieces of music because the lyrics in this music are so easy to understand and follow. Besides, Michael Jackson seemed to have given all his heart and musical talent in order to make this song a success. On top of that, I also felt that he wanted to provide us with a very strong sense of heavenly appeal with this extraordinarily melodious song that he was here on earth to serve a very specific purpose, and that was to spread love instead of hatred and cruelty.

Similar Cue Card Topics

Your ability to talk about this Cue Card would enable you to talk about the following Cue Cards as well:

  • Describe a song you often listen to.
  • Describe your favorite musician or singer.
  • Describe a piece of music you heard in your childhood.
  • Describe a famous song in your country.

Follow-up questions:

1. What would life be like without music?

Answer: Life without music would be quiet and dull. What would we do at parties besides eating and talking? That might as well be a meeting. Think about the best party you’ve ever been to, how vibrant and outgoing everyone was. Especially when everyone’s favorite jam came on. Music helps me focus on projects when the house is soundless. In the past, I would drive around town aimlessly at night with nothing but music and my thoughts. This helped my creativity tremendously.

2. Which is more important to you, music or TV?

Answer: Although television takes up a big chunk of my life, I could probably do without it. Music, on the other hand, is irreplaceable. I’m thinking to myself I could read the news & also read a novel that the blockbuster movie was adapted from. Consequentially, I cannot read a song. Novels are famously known for being better than their movie counterparts. There is no possible way to hear music in any other form. It all boils down to what can be replaced and what can’t.

3. What kind of music do you like?

Answer: I’ve always had an infatuation with music since I was a kid. My family likes to remind me of the time when I was two and I learned to say “Jackson! Jackson!” then hop around when his songs were played. Although my taste for music has evolved & diversified since then, music still holds a special place in my heart. I listen to all types of music, and I am open to new music. I also am a fan of classical music because it helps me concentrate and be more resourceful. The most common type of genre I listen to is Hip-Hop or Rap. I really feel that rappers recite more contemporary poetry.

4. What musical genre do you really hate? Why?

Answer: I hate some country music, specifically those that have been composed in the last couple of years. It has got to be the most depressing music genre available to the public. I cannot pinpoint the exact reason why I abhor country music, which is supposed to be is extremely patriotic! Most of the people, in my opinion, who listen to that type of music probably have never left the proximity of their area code. Music CEO’s realize that the native population are losing jobs to “foreigners” so country music artists use that and say locals should love pure nationalist emotions. It’s a clever way to be racist. Such music has a kind of twang that I do not like. It will never grow on me, and I try my hardest not to judge the people who listen to such music.

5. What do you think of music your parents listen to?
Answer: My father has the same affection, if not more, for music as me. While I was growing up I have fond memories of the family & there was always traditional or classical music playing during these moments. Although I don’t have any local music on my computer & never choose to listen to such music, I do like some of it. However, I am not crazy about some of today’s popular songs because they always seem to be furrowing their brows while griping about love.

6. Why do humans like music so much? And Why is music important to you?

Answer: Without looking up scientific facts why the human species is drawn to music, I can muse that music has been a part of humans since the existence of man. Cavemen created drums and hopped around to the beat while circling a fire. Music evokes a feeling in people and I think that it remains at its core. That is why humans appreciate music so much.

Music plays an important role in my life. Whatever emotion I am feeling or mood I am in, I pair it with music. Some people listen to Adele when they are sad or Pitbull when they are happy. Music is the soundtrack of my life. Certain songs come on and it teleports me back to a moment while I was listening to that same song, usually a happier time too.

7. What influence do you think music has on your life?
Answer: Music doesn’t influence me like it used to. When I was 12, I started listening to hip-hop and it slightly influenced the way I dressed and somewhat how I acted. Case in point, when I saw Dr Dre wearing a black fitted baseball hat, I always wore one. Now I am older and music doesn’t have that type of influence on me but some music does affect my behavior or mood. If I am listening to up-tempo music, it usually goes well with a party or my good music, whereas slower tempo music helps me relax and unwind.

8. What is the best time and place to listen to music?
Answer: That’s the beauty of music; you can almost always listen to music. I feel the best time to have music is in social gatherings like when you are with close friends and you create a soundtrack for that occasion. At the same time, a meeting where you are trying to work is not an appropriate time to listen to any kind of music; even white noise.

Part 3 - Two-way Discussion:

Discussion topics:

Famous people in your country:

Q. What kind of people become famous people these days?
Answer: Rich and powerful people with lots of money are usually famous these days. But if you want me to be specific, I would say that music artists, movie stars, cultural celebrities, successful sportspeople, top business executives of very big and profitable companies, successful professionals and politicians usually fall into the categories of famous people. Even some “controversial” persons – controversial not in the good causes most of the times though – with the help of a little bit of their “wits” as well as “media” can become “famous” overnight these days.

Q. Is this different from the kind of achievement that made people famous in the past? In what way?
Answer: No, the same kinds of achievement or “success” used to make people famous in the past as it is today except, of course, in the past, those famous people didn’t receive as much media coverage as these days, probably because the media technology back then wasn’t exactly as advanced as today. Then, of course, the standard bars for becoming “famous” in the past used to be pretty stiff and high also, and as a result, it was not exactly very easy to become famous quickly as in these days. Besides, in the past, successful peoples didn’t necessarily chase “fame” with the same intensity as we see it today, so the number of “famous” people was relatively much lower.

Q. How do you think people will become famous in the future?
Answer: People will become famous in the same way, as we see it today, by hard work, dedication and determination as well as by using their “god-gifted” talents. However, in my humble opinion, the use of social media networks will probably play the most crucial role in deciding how much famous a person will become in future. Besides, I also have a feeling that the same kind of “professions” or the same kind of “success” won’t necessarily make people famous in future as more and more new “professions” would probably be created while the “measure and standards” of success could also be redefined in future.

Being in the public eye:

Q. What are the good things about being famous? Are there any disadvantages?
Answer: When a person is popular, everybody knows about him or her. Fans and followers run after the famous persons just to get a glimpse of them while others are afraid to say a word against them out of the fear of “reprisals”. Companies beg of a prominent person to promote their products even if it means offering the “shares” of the companies. Restaurants offer them the best seats and the most special dishes, sometimes, for free. However, the biggest disadvantage of being famous is that a famous person doesn’t usually have a “private” life, and he/she is most often in fear of losing his or her popularity.

Q. How does the media in your country treat famous people?
Answer: Like any other country, most of the media in my country also treat the famous people like “Gods” with a capital “G”. Sometimes, I even feel like it is the media which make some people more famous than they really should be. Of course, media have a huge interest in publishing and showing the news, views and images of these eminent persons, unless they are some convicted criminals or crooked politicians, so that their sales and viewership increase as much as possible. However, if these “famous persons” ever fall out of favors of these media, they never hesitate to put “dirt” on them, be it fairly or unfairly.

Q. Why do you think ordinary people are interested in the lives of famous people?
Answer: Ordinary people are interested in the lives of influential and popular people because, well, they are just “ordinary” since they only do their day to day “ordinary” things in their lives. So, naturally, they become a bit interested in the lives of the famous persons to learn what kind of things they exactly do that makes them so “famous”. Besides, everybody wants to “identify” themselves with successful and important people in order to prove that they are also considered “important” to others. Then, of course, there are some others who genuinely want to follow in the footsteps of the famous people, by learning about them, in order to become just like them in future.

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