Senior plans to study acting in college, pursue theatre


Bethany Bissell

Senior Jonathan Macedo preforms in Chicago. Macedo has preformed in several musicals at Akins including Rock of Ages and Hairspray and is also involved in theatre outside of school with Zach Scott Theatre Pre-Profesional Company.

Zeta Handy, Staff Writer

Senior Jonathan Macedo has emerged as a star of the Akins theatre program.

He’s been a performer since the 7th Grade when he starred as the Big Bad Wolf in The Trial of the Big Bad Wolf.

He decided to join the Arts and Humanities Academy at Akins after he saw a friend at Dare To Dream hip hop dance show.

“I knew that I wanted to be in the environment of the arts. I’ve always loved the arts regardless if it’s the music from the instruments or the movement of the body or the presence of someone on a stage,” Macedo said.

As the years went on he performed in Akins Journey Theatre performances of Rock of Ages, Hairspray, and Chicago. He said favorite role was his most recent performance as Billy Flynn in Chicago.

“I really enjoyed portraying the role of Billy Flynn. It was so fun and challenging,” Macedo said.

In addition to performing in Chicago, Macedo also designed the choreography in the play.

In 2017 Macedo was accepted into the Zach Scott Theatre Pre-Professional Company. Zach Scott is a professional theatre based in downtown Austin.

“It’s an intensive program that Zach theatre offers in its educational program,” Macedo said. “You have to audition to be (accepted) in. The audition includes songs, monologue, and a dance call. They train you to be a professional performer and make you grow as an artist and person.”

Everybody has expectations for themselves and others especially when they are preparing for a performance.

“I hold really high expectations on myself as well as my cast,” he said. “I really try to meet those goals myself and push myself to the best of my ability. As for my cast as long as I see them working hard and having fun and getting close with everybody else it makes me so proud.”

Macedo hasn’t performed in every play the Akins Journey Theatre program has produced in the last four years, but he has been a major contributor to the department.

“Jonathan hands down is the hardest working student I have,” theater director Brad Distlehorst said.

Macedo decided against auditioning for the One Act Play after Chicago because he said he needed some time to pursue other interests.

I’m not at all surprised that he is pursuing theatre as his profession. I think I saw it in him before he saw it in himself. I’ve said it since his sophomore year that this is what he was born to do.”

— Theatre teacher Brad Distlehorst

“I do theatre outside as well as train, so that already takes up so much of my time” he said. I knew that if I added that on top of everything I would’ve gone crazy. I also feel like you can’t commit to so many things because you won’t give it your 100% to everything and you’re basically wasting your time.”

Senior Opal Sanchez is in the theatre program with Macedo and has seen him grown into the person he is today.

“Jonathan has grown so much over the years,” she said. “He has gotten so much better with his singing and dancing. He inspires me so much and I want to be as good as him one day,” Sanchez said.

Distelhorst, who started working at Akins, when Macedo was a sophomore, said he has seen Macedo grow into the person he has become.

“Jonathan has gone through his ups and downs just like all other students but he has grown and matured into a great performer and one of the best leaders of our program,” Distelhorst said.

College is in Macedo’s path he plans to pursue musical theatre or just theatre.

“I plan to pursue Musical Theatre or theatre in college,” he said.

I was lost for a bit on what I wanted to do with my life after high school. Then I thought why not pursue something I really love to do and have a huge passion for,’’ Macedo said.

Macedo has found what he wants to do after high school, and is waiting to hear back from the school’s he has applied for and also their theatre programs.

“I’m not at all surprised that he is pursuing theatre as his profession,” Distlehorst said. “I think I saw it in him before he saw it in himself. I’ve said it since his sophomore year that this is what he was born to do.”