Cheyenne East Speech and Debate competitor Jayden Roccaforte is just trying to help people find their smile and tell an impactful story. The now senior Thunderbird capped off a fantastic season with a National Championship win in Dramatic Prose at the Online National Speech and Debate Tournament this summer. Jayden shared his take on what makes an impactful story, his affinity to humor in performance and in life, his emotional response to his National victory, his goals for the future, and his hope for the future of the Wyoming Speech and Debate community.
Jayden will be a senior this coming year, and he’s been busy making a name for himself in the Wyoming community and now the national community. Jayden made a positive impact on the Cheyenne East Speech and Debate Team from the first day he joined the team as a freshman. He clearly had tall shoes to fill (his older brother Tre Roccaforte was a three-time National Qualifying competitor for East). He was not only up to the challenge, but happy to be challenged. Jayden is a hilarious guy who has a sense of humor that spills into his everyday interactions, and he loves to make people laugh. East Head Coach Marcus Viney described Jayden as "universally beloved," which appears to be pretty accurate. Not just a talented competitor, Jayden is an important and kind leader on the East Team and in the Wyoming community.
After capturing the Wyoming State Championship in Humor, Jayden became only the sixth Wyoming competitor to capture a National Championship (see the list of Wyoming National Champions HERE) when he finished first in Dramatic Prose at Nationals. In a year that really showcased the continued emergence of Wyoming competitors on the National scene, Jayden's victory was the pièce de résistance.
On the season finale (Ep. 20) of The One Clap Podcast, I was joined several of Jayden's coaches, his family, and his teammates who helped provide more insight into what makes Jayden a special competitor and person. Special thanks to Dionne Roccaforte, Marcus Viney, Allen Pino, Ashley Schulz, Saga McAllister, and Kambrie White.
Thank you especially to Jayden Roccaforte for sharing his thoughts and insights on the One Clap Pod. Congratulations to Jayden on his National Championship! If you haven’t had the opportunity to see his National Championship Dramatic Prose piece, find a link to the video below and check out the story that Jayden told so powerfully. I can’t wait to see what Jayden comes up with for his senior season!
To watch Jayden's Championship Prose performance of Barry Lyga's Bang, go HERE. Jayden's performance is at around 4:55:00.
To watch Jackie Young announce Jayden as the 2020 Prose National Champion, go HERE. Prose is announced at around 4:44:40.
HERE is both put together into one video!
Congratulations to all of the Wyoming Speech and Debate students who competed at the National Speech and Debate Tournament Online! We are so proud of you! See the top Wyoming competitor finishes (including Jayden) in THIS blog post.
I stand by the NSDA statement on George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery. It is located HERE.