Category 1 (ONE of either persuasive speaking or after-dinner speech)
Persuasive Speaking: Speaking time: 5 –10 minutes
This speech is designed to persuade and must be on a serious topic, although this does not mean that humour might not be useful at points in the speech. A problem/solution approach must be taken, i.e. speakers must identify a problem (it need not be an earth-shattering one) and propose, or at least examine, one or more solutions to it. Speeches should be prepared beforehand (i.e. prior to arriving at the competition) and should be from five to ten minutes in length. The same speech should be used throughout the competition. Speakers may use note cards, although judges are often more impressed by speakers who do not use any notes. Participants’ speeches are scored on the analysis of the problem, on the persuasiveness of the discussion (logic, appeal), on interest and on delivery.
The speaker has to deliver a speech that must entertain but also inform. The speech should be designed to be delivered from the top table after a dinner. The speaker will have chosen the company, corporation, society or group of diners, which will be his/her audience, and the judges will assume the role of this imaginary audience. There must therefore be a sound connection between the nominated audience and the content of the speech. Please note that it is not required that the competitor should at any time formally identify his/her audience, so long as it is clear beyond doubt who he/she is supposed to be addressing. Time penalties are especially severe in this event. Specific guidelines:
Speakers are encouraged to use wit and humour but a comedy routine of one-liners must be avoided.
Speeches should be humorous but should have some underlying moral point/criticism.
Use of satire/parody/puns is acceptable.
Hate speech of any kind is unacceptable.
Speakers cannot be, or address inanimate objects.
Category 2 (ONE of either solo acting or interpretive reading)
Solo Acting Speaking time: 5 - 8 minutes
Each participant should perform a memorized selection from plays which are of literary merit, and which have been published and may not have been written by the performer. The competitor must provide an appropriate introduction to his/her performance which shall set the scene and mood and include the title and author of the work. As well, the introduction should provide some indication of the particular interest or appeal of the selection. In rare cases, the selection may be from short stories, novels or essays of literary merit. The selection must be memorized with no prompting allowed. A simple costume and props are permitted but are not mandatory. The performance may be humorous or serious in nature, and one is not considered better than the other. The maximum speaking time, including the introduction, is (8) eight minutes. All performances will have a 15 second grace period commencing from the moment the stop signal is given. At the end of the 15 seconds, the Chairperson will verbally interrupt the performer, and the judges shall disregard anything further that is said.
Each participant should read a passage of prose or poetry (or a collection of poems), serious or humorous, with an appropriate brief introduction. Competitors must select their piece(s) prior to the tournament. The piece(s) must have been published and may not have been written by the reader. Students may read from the published text or from word processed pages in a folder. Choices of text may include anything from Dr. Seuss to George Orwell. Judges will be assessing how much the reader’s voice and presentation add to the material rather than with the talent of the author. Please note that this is a reading, not a dramatic presentation. Competitors may stand or sit but should not move around excessively. The time limits are from five to eight minutes, which includes the brief introduction. Judges will be considering the quality and helpfulness of the competitor’s introduction, ability to overcome the manuscript, understanding of the selection, voice (pace, timing, enunciation) and its overall appeal.
Category 3 (All competitors will participate in 2 rounds of Impromptu speaking)
Speakers will draw three topics, which may be a word, a quotation, a phrase or anything not related to current events. They must choose one of them and then prepare within two minutes. They may write notes but may not bring them up when they speak. The speech must last from three to five minutes. Speakers may speak in favour of, against, in favour of and against, or about the topic. It should be the sort of speech that would be delivered if the speaker were asked to speak on short notice to a general audience on the topic given. They may interpret it within reason, including treating it as a metaphor but must speak about the topic that they have been given. It is strictly understood that competitors will not use prepared material for this event. Wit, humour, logic, philosophy and sentiment are all equally welcome. Judges will be looking for agility of thought, substance, organizational ability and, above all, the ability of each speaker to communicate with style and originality. Points will be scored for adherence to statement of topic, organization, interest, and delivery. Specific guidelines:
Speeches should be structured and logical.
The interpretation of the topic and the speech should correlate in a meaningful way.
Canned/rehearsed/reworked impromptus will be penalized.
Hate speech of any kind is unacceptable.
No props of any kind are permitted.
The speaker must state the topic at the end of their speech.
No notes of any kind, other than the topic paper are permitted during the speech.
Although a speaker may make reference to the words or beliefs of others, whether fictional or real characters, he or she must speak in his or her own person for the substantial majority of the speech. Adoption of a persona is not allowed for Impromptu speaking.
Category 4 (This category will NOT be included in the 2020 Championship)
Debate: CNDF style
This is coordinate CNDF debating. Each competitor will debate with a partner from another school. Teams will be given three topics, one team chooses the topic and one team chooses the side. The resolution will be selected 30 minutes prior to the debate and the government must reveal the definition to the opposition 20 minutes before the debate. Resolutions must be defined in a way that a reasonable person might interpret the resolution and should be in keeping with the intent of the resolution. The tournament organizer will settle disputes about definitions.
Each speaker will have 6 minutes for their major speeches and the first speaker on each side will deliver a 3 minute rebuttal. In this style, the first Opposition delivers the first summary followed by the first proposition. Points of information are allowed and encouraged. Points of order, points of privilege and heckling are not. Plans/Models are not required but may be useful. The tournament will use the CNDF Rules found on the CSDF website. However please note that there is a greater emphasis on public speaking and delivery, given this is a public speaking competition. No one should be getting caught up in the intricacies of debate, and should focus on delivery, persuasion, content, and organization.