While many SM East students were out sunning themselves by the pool or hanging around the lake, a few members of the East Debate and Forensics squad were hard at work. Seven members attended the National Forensics League Debate and Speech National tournament in Indianapolis, Indiana, last week. Junior Jack Mitchell and senior Chris Carey, took home a trophy for fourteenth place in the category Duo Interpretation, making it the third trophy that East students have ever won at Nationals.
This was Carey’s second time at nationals and Mitchell’s first. Since Carey graduated in May, this was the last time the team will compete together.
Duo Interpretation is a partner event, in which the two perform a piece without looking at or touching each other. The tournament was divided into two parts, Debate, and Forensics. Duo Interpretation falls into the “Forensics” category, which involves more acting.
Mitchell said he was very surprised about their placing because although they had done extremely well in all of the Kansas tournaments, Kansas State High School Activities Association does not allow Kansas teams to compete along the national circuit.
“We had made it our goal to be in top 60, and that maybe we could make it to top 30, but we never expected fourteenth place,” Mitchell said.
The two performed a piece called “Alice In Zombieland,” an adaptation of Alice in Wonderland. The piece takes the original story by Lewis Carrol, but instead of the usual characters, all of the characters are zombies, and puts a very dark twist on the familiar tale of Alice in Wonderland.
Mitchell believes the piece set them apart because they were able to take a dark piece and make it lighter, instead of just preforming a piece with an already funny script. He said it was fun to take a familiar story and put a huge twist on it.
“The piece was meant to entertain, but not really to be funny. So we took some parts that weren’t that funny and we were able to make them funnier,” Mitchell said.