We Are CYT: Working Hard and Removing Limits

CYT isn’t just having an impact on students, but on the whole family! Sunday, November 5, CYT Fredericksburg mom Heather O. posted on her facebook how much hard work CYT can be, but how the end results are worth every moment. CYT Fredericksburg closed one of their fall shows, The Little Mermaid, that afternoon. Check out her story!

As we close The Little Mermaid (and look forward to Super Saturday for James and the Giant Peach), I’m sitting here relatively exhausted, eating dinner after bedtime, first I’ve really been still since before 9AM.

My feet are tired, but my heart is full. So for those of you closing a show, for those of you about to open, those of you “taking a (well-deserved) break,” and those of you just starting to consider this whole Theater Life Thing…

CYT requires hard work, mental and emotional effort, late nights and early mornings (sometimes back to back!), doing of homework in moving cars, emergency trips to walmart and CVS, sore muscles, stubbed toes, blisters, parent committees, crock pot dinners and fast food dinners, lots and LOTS of family teamwork AND committee teamwork, class fees, production fees, ticket block activation, bruised (no, let’s say, ‘adjusted’) egos, bruised elbows, learning new skill sets, carpools, trips to urgent care, and going outside of comfort zones! (And that’s just in the first two years!!)

But what CYT GIVES… CYT gives friendships forged in a common purpose, laughter, tears, triumphs, watching my introvert daughter SHINE on stage in the most hideous dress I could create, other people’s children who I now love as my own, a common ground for siblings no matter their age difference, role models in a wide variety of ages, watching my introvert husband make connections and even friends, finding purposes for odd combinations of God-given skills and talents, watching the work of God in the lives of the children youth and adults, hearing grade-school children lead an audience of strangers in prayer, watching a group of inexperienced strangers morph into a capable and unified team, watching my youngest walk into school still sporting yesterday’s stage makeup without a care about what others think of it, watching children grow into teens, watching ensemble members become featured dancers and leads, friends who know just when to walk behind you activating their fart noise app, seeing kids who are viewed as quirky in other places find this place where their “weird” is not only accepted but CELEBRATED, having at least 20 people a day ask how my ankle is doing, trusting the director to pull the best out of your child in an empowering and supportive way, having someone who knows you well enough to know when to tell you to shut up and walk away (you know who you are!), having friendships so strong that one of you can screw up (ahem, me!) and you both yell at each other and then when you’re done yelling you still love each other (you know who you are, too!), friends who see your untapped potential and challenge you to do something you’ve never done before. CYT gives confidence AND humility. It gives kids (and adults!) the chance to find their limits, and then remove them! And THAT’S just in the first two years…

Thank you, Heather, for sharing from your heart! CYT truly is a place where kids and adults can grow individually, build valuable relationships, find and then remove each of their limits them one by one, setting the bar higher each time.



In the Fredericksburg area? Check out their next show, James and the Giant Peach! They open Friday, November 17, and run for two weekends! Get your tickets today!

How has CYT affected YOUR life? Share your story with us!

Houston On the Mend With Help From Friends

In one of our last posts, we shared how CYT’s across the nation were banding together to support those affected by the Houston flood in August. CYT families donated funds, sent cards, and offered encouragement and prayer for those who lost their homes. At the time of the hurricane, CYT Houston was in the middle of auditions for one of their area’s fall shows. Now they’re resting and recovering after two full weekends of performances.

Shrek the Musical Jr. opened on Friday, October 27, with about 60 students performing! With set pieces from CYT Lafayette and some costumes from CYT San Antonio, Houston is on the mend. Houses are still being repaired and things aren’t quite back to “normal”, but CYT families were going to rehearsals, pushed through tech, and had a fabulous run!

It’s amazing how, time and time again, everything always comes together. CYT Houston’s other area is getting ready to open their second fall show, Tarzan, this weekend! The show has 4 performances – one Friday, November 10, two Saturday, November 11, and one Sunday, November 12. If you’re in the area, get your tickets today!! Way to go, CYT Houston! We Are CYT!

Facing Your Fears

CYT students aren’t the only ones with a CYT story to share. Check out this story from CYT San Diego mom, musical director, and teacher, Robyn S.! CYT really is changing lives, one stage at a time!

This girl, my daughter Hope…today she faced her biggest fear…performing in front of a large audience. She woke up this morning telling us she had a nightmare that she ruined the entire show for everyone! But we got to the theater and many other friends (like Maddie here) assured her she’d do great.

Maddie (12) and Hope (8)

Before her first number she took a deep breath, smiled at me and said “Mommy, I’m gonna be brave, I can do this!” And she sure did! After our 2 shows she said “Mommy, I love performing with my friends!” And that’s really what it’s all about…facing your fears with your friends by your side.

We’re always looking for new stories! Share your story with us!

My CYT Story: Another Home

The following story was submitted by Emily N. from CYT Lafayette for our 2018 My CYT Story Contest.

In May of 2011, my family and I went to see CYT Lafayette’s Beauty and the Beast. Although only in the second grade, I was blown away. I saw the kids up on stage and decided I wanted to do that. So that summer, I signed up for camp. I loved camp so much that in the winter, I begged my mom to sign me up for classes. It was kind of a big deal because I live about 30 minutes away from Lafayette. She finally said yes and I did my first acting class. I absolutely LOVED it! That spring I auditioned and got cast in my first show, Aladdin. Being up on stage just made me feel at home. But the thing I loved most about CYT, was the family I had. The bond I had with my cast and fellow classmates was unbreakable. 6 years later, I’m auditioning for my 7th show and I cannot wait. My friends and I have shared so many memories together and I cannot wait to share even more. I have grown closer to God through worship and learned how to perform for Him. CYT didn’t just help me love theater, but it gave me another place I can call home.


Want to submit your story to the 2018 My CYT Story Competition? Deadline is April 1.

DISCLAIMER: Though, all complete stories submitted will be forwarded to their respective area’s leadership for judging as part of the 2018 My CYT Story Competition, not all stories will be published on this blog. Likewise, having your story published on the blog does not guarantee that your story has been selected as a Regional Winner.

My CYT Story: Just Getting Started

The following story was submitted by Lauren R. from CYT San Diego for our 2018 My CYT Story Contest.

I was introduced to CYT when my best friend crewed a CYT show during the fall. It was Annie and he loved it! He told me I had to get involved with CYT immediately. I did the winter show Wizard of Oz where I played a munchkin. I was very nervous because I didn’t get a callback. But when I saw my name on the cast list my face lit up. My family and I screamed because we were so excited! I had so much fun in that show and knew I wanted to continue CYT.

I auditioned for Hairspray that Spring where I met my best friend. He and I clicked instantly. We did a swing class that season together and we were partners! To this day we are still best friends!

This story repeated itself over and over again. I continued to meet new people who I became very good friends with. CYT is the reason I have made long-lasting friendships with such amazing people! I have done 6 CYT classes and shows. I’m currently in Junie B Jones at CYT San Diego Central. I’m playing the role of May. This has been my favorite CYT show to be apart of because of the wonderful cast, crew, and artistic team. It’s been an amazing experience I will never forget.

I plan on continuing my CYT story and continue to make friends along the way. CYT has allowed me to do what I love; perform, praise God, make people smile, and have a good time! If it weren’t for CYT, I wouldn’t be the young girl I am today. CYT has impacted my life in a way that I’ll treasure forever. My story has just begun, there are many more memories to come!

Want to submit your story to the 2018 My CYT Story Competition? Deadline is April 1.

DISCLAIMER: Though, all complete stories submitted will be forwarded to their respective area’s leadership for judging as part of the 2018 My CYT Story Competition, not all stories will be published on this blog. Likewise, having your story published on the blog does not guarantee that your story has been selected as a Regional Winner.

My CYT Story: Just the Right Time

Life is full of ups and downs, but God is always there! Sometimes He brings people to CYT at just the right time. Check out this anonymous story about how God used His perfect timing and provided for this CYT Santa Cruz student!

I recently stopped piano lessons because my teacher is moving away, after five years of lessons. Till now, piano lessons were the only extra-curricular activities we could afford. A close family friend had had her kids in CYT, and so I heard a lot about it. That friend offered to pay for a class for me in the Winter 2016 session. It was amazing, the friendships I made and the relationships I developed, just in one session! Of course I wanted to continue in the Spring. We stopped piano lessons in June, and the adjustment was really hard for me. I’d known my piano teacher and her family all my life, so the loss was especially difficult for me. CYT was there for me at just the right time. I auditioned for Honk! Jr. and was cast. The friendships I had previously made blossomed, and new friendships developed among my Secret Pals and other cast members. CYT has helped me grow so much, and I am so thankful CYT was there for me when I was going through a hard time. God’s timing was perfect, and I know I can trust Him to provide for me in everything.

We Are CYT: Family Across the Nation

In late August, on the same weekend as auditions for their fall show, CYT Houston families evacuated their homes when Hurricane Harvey flooded their city. Their homes were damaged, possessions lost, and lives were changed. But during their time of need, families from CYT Baton Rouge, LafayetteFront Range, New York City, Waco, and Chicago all mailed letters, made donations, and sent gift cards to CYT Houston to help. 

Less than two months later, the families are back in their homes but things have still not completely returned to normal. However, the students are back at classes and rehearsals, and the CYT Houston families are working hard to put on one of their fall shows, Shrek the Musical Jr.But they’re not doing it alone. Shrek is coming together with a little help from their neighbor, CYT Lafayette!

This weekend, on October 8, CYT Lafayette closed their own production of Shrek the Musical Jr.! Instead of tearing down the set or putting it into storage, it’s getting put to good use and sent over to CYT Houston for their production! Check out what Gerald B., the CYT Lafayette Executive Director, has to share!

“First of all it was a real privilege to have Houston visit our show and are honored that we could give back to the CYT affiliate that was the inspiration to start CYT Lafayette 9 years ago!

Many people know how devastating the flood was in Louisiana last year and how hard it was on our families and the community. The support we received from the CYT affiliates was over whelming so it was an easy decision to jump in and help. Their dads have had little time to focus on CYT with so many people needing help with their homes. It’s the least we could do to help support them.

Two Houston Dads (Ari and Richard) drove to Lafayette with the truck and arrived in Lafayette around 2:30. They got to watch the show then started load out with our dads around 5:30. The sets were a little two large for the truck so they spent an hour or so making as much fit as possible. We wrapped up around 8pm and sent them on their way. The staff also agreed to help with expenses for their trip so we included a gift card for $450.

Praying they have a great show! Blessings from Lafayette!

We are CYT!”