From Acting To Awesome Apprenticeship: On Your Toes Tech

This Apopka High School student started as a performer and now enjoys the excitement of doing theater tech.

Makalynn Prince is a senior at Apopka High School who enjoys both performing and doing theater tech. 

“Of course, acting is pretty exciting,” Prince says. She started as a performer in middle school and loved how it felt to tell stories and be someone different or find the similarities between herself and the character.

Tech Talk

Prince got involved in theater tech when her teacher recommended she try tech. “There were so many students who wanted to perform, but not enough to do the tech side of things. Without tech, we can’t put on a production. So, even if it’s not in the spotlight, tech is very important.” Starting with prop work, Prince moved on to costuming and hair and makeup.

But theater tech work is thrilling for her. “It’s like going back in time. For our school production of “Steel Magnolias”, I had to research what types of hairdresser chairs they had in the ‘80s. Or there are times when you have to go back, like Shakespeare. Being a prop master is part history lesson and part art class,” Prince says.

Prince fell in love with the immediacy of theater tech work and the need to be able to think fast on her feet. It can affect the production if you don’t have the right prop at the right time. “Sometimes you have to improvise if things don’t go as planned, but that can be exciting and fun, too,” she says.

College and Beyond

Because of the apprenticeship, Prince has a few professional productions under her belt and is looking forward to continuing her theater education. Although she has her sights set on studying English and literature in college and possibly becoming a teacher, Prince says she will continue to take theater classes and stay involved in community theater. 

Family Support

Her family has been highly supportive of her theater work, and she’s grateful for all the sacrifices they’ve made, especially driving her all over central Florida for rehearsals, plays, and auditions. Even her football player brother has come to her plays to show his support. 

Prince says one of her biggest supporters is her mom. The two have an affinity for The Rocky Horror Show. “I know it’s a bit odd. But we both love the music and the crazy story. There probably aren’t that many teens that would want to watch Rocky Horror— the show or the movie—with their parents, but it’s so funky and over the top that it’s fun for me and my mom.”

The Rigors of Tech Work

Prince recently finished working on Rollins College’s production of Metamorphoses as a prop runner. With the set up of the stage and the large pool used as a centerpiece in the play, Prince had to sometimes run out of the theater, go around the back of the building and come back in to work tech during performances. “I got a lot of exercise on that production,” she laughs. 

Next up, Prince hopes to be working on Rollins College’s production of The Prom. She says she feels fortunate to have access to more productions since recent budget constraints cut her school’s musical theater program. “If it weren’t for the William Daniel Mills Apprenticeship, I wouldn’t have the network I have. I’m so fortunate to widen my circle and be a part of Central Florida’s diverse theater community, which helps all of us learn and grow.”


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Written by Tarre Beach

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