Hello Friends!

After talking to a few peers I've decided to take part in the blogging world in order to allow those of you who want to keep up with my college experience to do so! As many of you already know I leave for New Jersey Friday morning. I'm truly excited and cannot wait to see what this magnificent programs holds for me. However, considering I haven't started college yet, I don't have much to say about my experience! I decided I would dedicate this post to relaying the adventures of my summer.

I began my summer with GRADUATION and a fabulous senior voice recital with my 7 year voice teacher Sam Germany. My voice recital will always be one of my favorite memories. Between getting to jam with the guys and finally having the opportunity to sing anything I wanted, I feel my voice recital truly represented me as an artist. I'm extremely thankful for all of you who came out to support me! If you missed it I'm planning to put the performance on youtube if you would like to check it out! 

Following all of the spectacular senior activities. The dance company was able to perform at Walt Disney World!!! It was an absolute blast. My best friend, Camille, and I did a lot of princess searching throughout our trip. Along with riding awesome rides with Katy and lots of other Disney inspired adventures. I would have to say my favorite part of Disney World is the Ariel ride in Magic Kingdom. Honestly, I'm a sucker for anything Ariel!! Ha! The most exciting things about the trip were all the wonderful experiences our dancers were able to have. We were able to take a dance class with a Disney dancer! Not only did she provide help with picking up choreography and techniques, but she also provided those of us who want to dance professionally with details on the audition process and the Disney college program! Something I will absolutely look into. For real, what girl DOESN'T want to be a Disney princess??! We performed our company routine at Downtown Disney, as well as taking classes. Regardless of the EXTREME heat, all of our dancers were absolutely fabulous and I couldn't be more proud. Especially the little ones who cared their bags the long trip to the stage all by themselves (I carried four for them!!). I'm so excited for what this year holds for the company girls, and don't worry I will still be involved regardless of my location.

In July I was able to perform in Garland Summer Musicals Crazy for You. It was also the first time I was paid for performing. Woohoo! I was a part of the show girl ensemble. I'm telling you, this choreography was incredible. From the frilly pinkest bubble gum tutu costume you've ever seen, to high kicking pans over our heads, to wearing gigantic feathered headpieces the show girls rocked the stage! I'm absolutely thrilled I was able to work with professionals such as: Patty Granville, Buff Shurr, Larry Miler, Joseph Jones, and Julie Russell Stanley in order to make this show happen. There were a lot of talented people in the room, folks! It was an absolute blast all the way through as a performer and person. Along the way, I was able to make many new friends who I plan to keep in touch with over the years. It was one of my favorite casts I have ever worked with! Not to mentioned how hard every worked to master the "crazy" tap dancing. Get it? In case you have trouble finding me in my crazy costumes and wig. In the first picture, I am second from the left. The second, second from the left. The third, far right.

When Crazy for You closed, I ended my summer by packing up and going to Philadelphia! I attended the Broadway Dreams Foundation intensive. I cannot even begin tell you how inspirational this experience was. Working with amazing artists such as Tituss Burgess, Quentin Earl Darrington, Alex Newell, and many more! The intensive had daily classes along with rehearsals for the final showcase! I was featured in the Saturday Night Fever performance. "It was so bad, its good," according to my incredible director Kyme. Just imagine rolling all of the status quo parts of the 70s in one and putting it on stage!! More importantly I was able to take classes the pushed me as actress not only in my skills set, but also in my mindset. The "Dreamer's Care" Class taught by Quentin was especially eye opening by reminding us all why we do what we do. It's not about money or status or anything but using the gift we have been given and sharing it in order to bring joy in heartache, light in darkness, and so many other precious things. I think the world would be a different place without artists with dreams. While our role in society may not seem as obvious, I believe we are put in this world to provide the happiness every one is seeking. Whether it be in a blowout theatrical experience, or in a quiet song next to a hospital bed, we are the people who allow you to let go of your momentary struggles and feel hope. I know that's why I do what I do. I want to see the smile on a little girl's face when I say, "Hi, I'm Princess Ariel," and the tears in an elderly man's eyes when I sing his favorite song to him. I feel so blessed to have been given such a gift and I hope to share it with people everyday for the rest of my life. Thank you so much for reading. I can't wait to tell you about my college life.

Tu Me Manques, McKenna

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