By Nikki Darling, TSB Staff
Studying for finals.
Decorating her graduation cap.
Pulling out suitcases for vacation.
McKinney North High School senior Mackenzie Schulien is preparing for the next step in her career, which is college. But before she embarks upon that journey, she had the time to sit down with us here at Town Square Buzz to recap her experiences with McKinney and what her future plans are.
Beginning with her sophomore year of High School, Mackenzie was the president of a local theatre organization called the Young Actors Guild. Dedicating hours upon hours per week, Mackenzie helped shaped the youth theatre scene in McKinney and gained valuable experience that will help her future career.
Before heading off to college Mackenzie has an eventful summer in store. Embarking on her first ever vacation out of the country she is first visiting family in Amsterdam and Rome.
“I am very excited to be experiencing other cultures,” Mackenzie says excitedly.
She will then be coming home to compete at the International Thespian Society nationals with her theatre troop from McKinney North High School. And ater that a trip to California will give her some much needed time spent relaxing with the family before she begins her internship with the McKinney Reparatory Theatre. That internship will mark the third year in a row that she works as a technical producer for a summer musical.
Mackenzie already has a brief college experience and just listen to what she is most excited about. “I was one of seven women to be chosen to be in the musical theatre department at TCU,” says Mackenzie. “I set up an audition time and it was a whole afternoon spent on campus auditioning.”
Those auditions included a dance and a one-on-one interview with all 10 directors from the theatre program. An email not long after confirmed that not only was she one of the very few to be accepted into the musical theatre department but with a scholarship as well. “I would have never been able to get where I am without the opportunities I got through the city of McKinney,” says Mackenzie. With great things foreseen for her future, Mackenzie reflects upon what her future goals are.
“What I really want to be doing with my life is impacting audiences,” she says. “I’m not trying to get my name out there to be the next Kristin Chenoweth or Indina Menzel. I just want to make an impact on those people that I’m supposed to. I believe that everything happens for a reason and if I am supposed to impact someone’s life with my performance then I know I will do that, no matter on what large scale I get.”
She was asked that if she had to choose one person to sit down and eat dinner with who would it be?
“Frank Sinatra,” she replies with no hesitation. “It reminds me of my Dad. He used to play Frank Sinatra on Sunday nights. I think performance is about being who you are onstage and Frank Sinatra was one of those performers who always got that.”
Editor’s Note: Watch periodically for `The Next Generation’ stories, a look at young people in McKinney ready to tackle the world.