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News for the Carlsbad High School Community

The Lancer Link

News for the Carlsbad High School Community

The Lancer Link

Dramatic Interpretation competitors share the behind the scenes of their event

Rebecca Berke
There are many people and events to participate in for Speech and Debate. NSDA provides many statistics about the students participating and the events available.

The Carlsbad High School Speech and Debate team is one of the highest-ranked in the nation. Dramatic Interpretation, one of the many events in this extracurricular, is unique in many ways, such as its freedom of choice. 

There are many types of events in Speech and Debate, ranging from acting performances to arguing whether or not a bill should be passed. One of these events is called Dramatic Interpretation, otherwise known as DI. Freshman Belen Chavez chose to compete in DI and says that having to improve her speaking skills is part of her motivation to do this event. 

“I hope to be more comfortable speaking in front of people and acting in front of people,” Chavez said. 

Dramatic Interpretation requires the memorization and presentation of a dramatic script. Often, the way competitors choose their scripts is based on a problem or topic that they want to address.  

“I like how I am able to choose my own script and perform it in my own way,” Chavez said.  

Many students also enjoy DI because of the freedom that comes with it. Since competitors get to choose the script, it is up to them to determine what their message is and how they want it to come across. 

“I wanted to join DI because I thought it would be a fun way to act [the script] out in front of the judges,” Chavez said. “I’m not that big on debating so I thought this was going to be fun.” 

Junior Josie Mitchell is the captain of DI and has another reason why she likes the event so much. She enjoys the creative component of the event because she can choose how to present and move during the speech.

“It’s also fun to be incredibly dramatic in a speech,” Mitchell said. “My other event is an impromptu speech about international events, which isn’t very creative or dramatic. Having DI to balance this out is very fun.” 

DI is one of the many acting events in speech and debate, but is unlike the others because of its deeper meaning behind the scripts. Since it is meant to be dramatic, the script is often serious and has a strong message.

“DI is different from other events because it merges acting with important social issues,” Mitchell said. “Oftentimes, DIs will contain themes of things like mental health… These could be more official issues, but acting them out allows us to speak about these issues in a more informal and creative setting.”

Mitchell believes that other students should join the event because of the benefits it can provide. For one, she believes that the experience can be used in other events and real-life situations. 

“The blocking and mannerisms of DIers can be embarrassing or melodramatic, but by doing that in front of a room of strangers, it helps your confidence,” Mitchell said. “Ironically, doing a dramatic acting event has helped me be more confident in humorous speeches.”

Mitchell has special responsibilities in addition to just being part of the event. As the DI captain, she also helps other students in the event fine tune their speech and become competition ready. 

“I am responsible for my DI competitors,” Mitchell said. “I have to help novices choose their speeches and help my peers block their speeches. Mostly I provide feedback, but the skill and success of this event lies in the people who compete.” 

Overall, Dramatic Interpretation has helped Mitchell both inside and outside of a school setting, and made her more assured and helped her acting skills. Even though it is just an event in a school extracurricular, it has many benefits in the real world, according to Mitchell.

“I believe DI has helped my performance in all of my other events,” Mitchell said. “It has also helped me reach out about personal issues and talk to peers who might understand. I hope to continue to become more confident by competing in DI. I also hope to continue to improve my skills over time.”

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About the Contributor
Rebecca Berke, Reporter
Rebecca Berke is a freshman at Carlsbad High School, and it is her first year on The Lancer Link staff. She enjoys playing guitar and listening to music. She enjoys writing and hopes to write many more stories for The Lancer Link.

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  • J

    JamieNov 30, 2023 at 4:51 pm

    Fantastic writing, Rebecca. This piece was informative, yet inspirational, and overall an enjoyable read. Keep up the good work.