Interpretation (ACTING) EVENTS
Dramatic Interpretation (DI)
Have you ever wanted to learn how to cry on command? How about getting other people to cry on command? In DI, you can develop and refine your skills as an actor, learning to get in touch with your character's emotions. You can choose to interpret an autobiography, play, novel, movie etc. In this event, you will discover how to cut a script, block a piece, create dynamic levels, connect emotionally with an audience, and yes, cry at the drop of a hat.
Humorous Interpretation (HI)
There's more to Speech and Debate than arguing in a stiff, starch suit using robotic hand gestures. Imagine a world where you can bring to life your favorite characters from plays, books and movies. Rather than evoking tears from the audience, how about making them pee their pants (with laughter)? Humorous Interpretation is an event for those born with a funny bone and a love for comedy. Amy Poehler put it best, "There's power in looking silly and not caring that you do."
Duo Interpretation (Duo)
In Duo Interpretation, two’s never a crowd. Duo is the only speech event to involve two people, but there’s a catch: the partners can’t look at or touch one another. From finding a movie script or a published story and creatively reimagining it into a ten minute piece, Duo is an incredibly fun and entertaining event that explores creativity and teaches partners teamwork, reliability, and presentation/acting skills. If two heads are better than one, Duo is the most fun!
Thematic Interpretation (TI)
Can’t decide between dramatic interpretation and humorous interpretation? There’s an event for that too! Thematic Interpretation involves picking a central idea or theme and finding three or more published works—funny, sad, news articles, etc.—that build that idea. TI is the only interpretation event to involve a prop: a small binder that can be used in various ways to add dimensionality to a performance. Like other interpretation events, TI helps hone presentation and acting skills, helps explore creativity, and helps students become efficient content curators. TI can also involve singing, so it’s the perfect event to reach high notes!
Oratorical Interpretation (OI)
This is your basic, everyday, run-of-the-mill speech event. It’s literally memorizing and giving a speech that has been given before, pretty simple right? Nothing is ever that simple in Speech and Debate. Once you memorize the speech, you really have to understand the motivation behind the speaker and become one with the author.
Original Prose & Poetry (OPP)
It's said that every actor's dream is to be their own script writer and director. With Original Prose and Poetry, you have that chance. Competitors can formulate their own script on any topic, and perform it. With your writing and acting skills, you have 10 minutes to make your judge laugh, cry, and smile. Share your story and creativity with the world!
Original Oratory (OO)
Are you looking for a creative outlet for your opinions? Do you like to speak about problems in our society? In OO you'll convince the audience how we as a society should fix the problem you addressed. You can choose a topic of any field, from happiness to procrastination. Original Oratory is an innovative platform speaking event where people of all skill sets can succeed, but a captivating personality is definitely required!
Original Advocacy (OA)
Have you ever felt strongly about an issue in America, but feel as though it just doesn’t get enough attention? Original Advocacy can be your outlet! What makes Original Advocacy truly rewarding is the fact that each speech requires the student to advocate for an original solution to the selected problem. Original Advocacy raises awareness about issues you care about while inspiring adults and fellow students.
Expository Speaking (Expos)
Known affectionately as “competitive teaching,” expository is a great event to inform your audience about a particular topic, display your artistic abilities through visual aids, and tell cheesy puns without getting groaned out of the room. From topics such as menus, to legos, to standards of beauty, Expos allows students to express a love of teaching and creativity and teaches invaluable presentation skills to captivate any audience.
For individuals with quick wit who prefer spontaneity or for individuals who would like to develop those skills, impromptu is a great event to develop an engaging speaking style. With 2 minutes to prepare a five minute speech on topics as abstract as “ignorance” or even common day objects such as “picnic basket,” impromptu challenges you to think on your feet and connect ideas to create an entertaining, thought-provoking speech.
International or National Extemporaneous (IX/NX)
Impromptu's more formal older sibling, Extemp, is also a limited preparation event. In Extemp, competitors are given 30 minutes to prepare a 7 minute speech on a current events topic. For example, “Should President Trump give amnesty to undocumented immigrants?” Using previously researched articles, competitors develop an opinion on the topic. Extemp is an incredibly rewarding event, challenging participants to think on their feet, to keep up with the news, and offer critical analysis of world events.
Public Forum Debate (PF)
When you think of debate, you probably imagine a group of intellectuals engaging in fervent discussion about some form of a current event. That’s exactly what Public Forum is. Considered to be the most accessible and orthodox form of debate, Public Forum is a partner-debate in which students work with one-another partner to contrive two cases, one that affirms that month’s respective resolution (topic), and the other that negates. Armed with evidence and citations, students use their cases and logic to argue for or against the resolution, attempting to convince the judge that their arguments and logic outweigh those of the other team’s at the end of the debate.
Examples Resolution (2019 April): The United Nations should grant India permanent membership on the Security Council.
Parliamentary Debate (Parli)
No prep? No problem! Parliamentary Debate is the only spontaneous form of debate in the CFL, where competitors are given topics, not months, but rather minutes in advance of the round. Armed with pre-cut articles, common knowledge, and a trustworthy partner, parliamentary debaters have 20 minutes to develop a case either affirming or negating a resolution. You and your partner will learn teamwork and critical thinking as you debate a wide variety of topics, ranging from a nuclear deal with Iran, to the merits of revoking Justin Bieber's citizenship. If you love the challenge of thinking on your feet and want to debate something new every single round, Parli is the debate style for you.
Lincoln-Douglas Debate (LD)
Named after the renown series of debates between President Abraham Lincoln and Senator Stephen Douglas on the issue of slavery, Lincoln-Douglas (or LD) debate is a one-on-one event that focuses heavily on logic, ethical values, and philosophy. Using evidence, citations, and philosophical ideologies, students form two cases, one that affirms that month’s resolution, and the other that negates. The goal of the debate is to convince the judge that your moral views on the topic are founded and frankly more logical than those of the other side. For those with a keen interest in the issues of morality and developing different views on relevant issues, Lincoln-Douglas is a rewarding and engaging event.
Example Resolution (2019 March/April): The illegal use of drugs ought to be treated as a matter of public health, not of criminal justice.
The most well-established of the debate events, policy debate distinguishes itself from other debates in its depth, detail, and prestige. In teams of two, policy debaters discuss a specific plan of action that addresses a yearly resolution. If you love research, analytic thinking, and intellectual discussion, and are a motivated, dedicated, and tireless worker, come and learn what it means to participate in the nation's oldest debate styles as part of Mitty's young yet successful policy debate program!
2018-2019 Resolution: The United States federal government should substantially reduce its restrictions on legal immigration to the United States.
2019-2020 Resolution: The United States federal government should substantially reduce Direct Commercial Sales and/or Foreign Military Sales of arms from the United States.
Imagine the U.S. Congress. Now imagine yourself in it. That's the purpose of Congressional Debate, where competitors take part in mock sessions of congress and debate the merits of various bills. Prepare cases for either side of each piece of legislation, and in three minute speeches, state your case. Competitors are then cross examined by their fellow representatives or senators and must defend their view. For those with interest in law-making or simply arguing about relevant issues, Congress is an accessible and engaging event that enhances students’ ability to defend their views, think on their feet, and research effectively.