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UA Little Rock Graduate to Share Entertainment Skills at Happiest Place on Earth

Makayla Allman
Makayla Allman

Makayla Allman, a recent graduate of UA Little Rock, will soon be sharing her entertainment skills with the millions of people who annually visit the happiest place on Earth.

In August, Allman, who graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance Performance degree this spring, will move to Orlando to participate in the Disney World College Program at Disney World as an entertainment cast member.

“I’ve only actually been to Disney World once, but I feel like it’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” she said.

Thousands of college students participate in the internship program every year, but Allman passed a select audition process to earn a place as an entertainment cast member.

“I saw that there was an online process to submit a video audition to become an entertainment cast member, so I learned some choreography and submitted it,” Allman said. “I was lucky enough to be called for callbacks. I was in the middle of doing ‘Twelfth Night’ at UA Little Rock, and it was crazy. I remember driving all night to Kentucky to do this callback at eight in the morning.”

While she doesn’t yet know what role she will play at Disney World, Allman said she will be working as a character, dancer, and/or parade performer. Allman’s internship will end in February of next year, but before her Disney adventure can begin, the Piggott native will embark on an international trip this summer to study dance at the Accademia dell’Arte in Arezzo, Italy. Allman’s study-abroad trip is sponsored by the UA Little Rock School of Literary and Performing Arts.

The Summer Dance Intensive program offers dancers the chance to explore self-generated and collaboratively created work and choreography over two 2-week intensives with world-renowned dancers and choreographers. This month-long intensive was created to foster personal choreographic connection, promote storytelling through dance, and enhance technical skills through a variety of styles and approaches.

Allman has been dancing competitively since age 11. At UA Little Rock, she has been a choreographer and performer in events like the Fringe Festival of New Student Works, Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night,” “The Threepenny Opera,” Body Works: BareBones, and Dance Harvest: Renaissance.

Allman is excited to learn more about choreography during her summer study abroad program as she sees choreography as a major part of her future career endeavors.

“I’ll be learning about choreography and improvisation within dance and exploring that within a community,” Allman said. “I really love choreographing, and it’s something I’ve been thinking about for the future. I’m excited to see their take on this.”