2021 has been an incredible year for General Hospital actress Sydney Mikayla (Trina Robinson). She graduated high school, got accepted to a top university, and received her very first Daytime Emmy nomination! Soap Central talked with the rising young star about the work she's put into school and her career to make all these amazing moments happen, and we discovered that she's not just super talented -- she's super poised, kind, and intelligent, as well.
Soap Central: Congratulations to you on your Emmy nomination, Sydney!
Sydney Mikayla: Thank you so much! I really appreciate that.
Soap Central: How do you feel?
Mikayla: Ecstatic, honestly. I'm just in shock and totally amazed, but so, so grateful.
Soap Central: How did you find out that you'd been nominated?
Mikayla: Oh, my goodness, I was actually trying to make a reaction video. I wanted a genuine reaction video either way, if I [got nominated] or not, so I remember waking up at 11, and I told everyone, "Regardless of what happens, no one can tell me!" I had to literally put my phone on airplane mode and we turned the camera on, and it was kind of crazy, but it was a genuine reaction that I posted on my Instagram of the moment that [I was nominated]. I was pretty shocked, but it was awesome to find out that way and to record it! I really enjoyed doing it that way.
Soap Central: Definitely! Now you have it for posterity's sake. Such a good idea! Do you remember which scenes you submitted on your reel?
Mikayla: Yes, I remember submitting Trina processing her father's death. I think that was really important. I was also really excited to show her kind of confronting Cyrus [Jeff Kober]. That was really fun for me to do, because Jeff is just such a great actor to work with and play off of. He plays evil so well! [Laughs] So, to use those scenes and play off him, I'm just so glad that's what got me the Emmy nom.
Soap Central: Was it difficult for you to narrow down those scenes, or did you know pretty quickly what work over the course of the year you wanted to showcase?
Mikayla: I knew right away. I know when I get scripts, and I'm like, "Wow, this is really powerful." I usually mark which scripts, and I just save them. So, I kind of knew, but I went through them, anyway, just to double-check, because I like to be sure. But I pretty much had it in my mind what I wanted.
Soap Central: You seem very organized, Sydney! Thinking ahead to capture your nomination reaction on film, and also marking your potential Emmy-worthy scripts ahead of time. You seem like a good forward-thinker.
Mikayla: Oh, yeah, absolutely! Interestingly enough, we were submitting our Emmy reels around the same time that I was submitting college applications, so I definitely feel like I have to be an organized person, just because you have to keep each thing in its own lane, kind of. You have to make sure everything is its own thing and in its own way. But I think everything worked out: I'm going to UCLA, so I'm pretty excited! I think my organizational skills have gotten me pretty far.
Soap Central: Oh, my goodness, congratulations on your acceptance to UCLA! Will you be starting this fall?
Mikayla: I am, yes! I'm very excited.
Soap Central: So, does that mean that you've been juggling GH with your final year of high school these past several months?
Mikayla: Yes, I have. I graduated a little bit early because of COVID, so I've just been kind of working through my classes, but, yeah, it's been a little bit insane! But I'm grateful for it, and I am just so grateful that my academic career and my acting career have kind of taken off at the same time. I'm really excited about that, and I'm looking forward to seeing where it takes me.
Soap Central: I think back to my own high school graduation year, and I'm like, "Damn, if I could have ended that with an Emmy nomination?! I'd be flying high!"
Mikayla: [Laughs] Yeah, it is kind of cool. I went to my prom actually the same day I was nominated, so that was pretty insane. I was like, "What a great way to celebrate!" So, very cool, very awesome.
Soap Central: Yes, prom is a perfect celebration! Did you do anything outside of prom to celebrate, anything separate, just for you?
Mikayla: I think that was pretty much it, but if my parents want to give me money, they always can! The door is always open. And if they see this, it might convince them! [Laughs]
Soap Central: Going back to your Emmy submission reel, do you remember how you got in the mood or prepared for some of those scenes?
Mikayla: I usually just look up people with the same story. You'd be surprised, when you go on YouTube, how many people have crazy kind of soap opera lives. So, I really just watch those videos and understand that vulnerability and just understand what it's like to be human and how to best portray that and get there. That thought of putting yourself in someone else's shoes is really so useful and such a great skill in acting.
Soap Central: Yes, that and listening! The two most important tools in an actor's toolbox. And speaking of that, how much of your own performance is influenced by your scene partners?
Mikayla: Oh, they have so much influence! And they are all so amazing. Eden [McCoy, Josslyn Jacks] and William [Lipton, Cameron Webber] have already been nominated so many times. Actually, I was so shocked that they weren't nominated this year! But they were just so congratulatory, and in general, they're so supportive. They'll run lines if you want to run lines. They've been really great. We've been talking about the college application process, as well, throughout, and also working. So, they're really great scene partners to have, and I'm glad I shared so many of my scenes with them -- as well as my parents! I mean, Brook [Kerr, Portia Robinson] and Réal [Andrews, Marcus Taggert], wow! Soap legends to play off of. They are just so professional, and they come to work every time, really ready to work and really ready to support me. So, I just think having all of that in general has helped with my Emmy nom, and I am so appreciative that I get to work with them every day.
Soap Central: What do you think about the competition in your category? Are you familiar with everyone and their work?
Mikayla: I'm not necessarily familiar with everyone's work -- I don't watch TV because I genuinely do not have the time at all. But I will say I am so proud to be nominated. I'm so proud of everyone in the category, but especially Katie [MacMullen, Willow Tait] and Tahj [Bellow, T.J. Ashford]. I congratulated them both. I'm so proud of them, and they are both just so deserving. I'm just glad to be nominated, and whatever happens, happens.
Soap Central: After having spoken to you about organization and preparing, I'm guessing you're the type of person who will prepare a speech on the chance that you win?
Mikayla: Oh, absolutely! Yes, yes, I will! I'm sure I will make you all cry, but I will definitely prepare a speech and probably practice it a few times. [Laughs]
Soap Central: Is there anything else that you'd like to add?
Mikayla: I just want to say that regardless of what happens [during the ceremony], I am so grateful for everyone who has flown into my life and so grateful to everyone who has put something in me that has caused me to be the best person I can be. I really think all of that work has come to fruition, and I am just so grateful to everyone in my life -- this is a win for all of us!
What do you think about Sydney Mikayla being nominated in the Outstanding Younger Performer category for this year's Daytime Emmy Awards? Do you think she'll take home the win? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.