CYT Weekly Roundup: December 10th- December 17th

The best of what happened in CYT last week:

CYT San Diego is happy to welcome a new Managing Director in 2012- Colleen Kollar Smith!

CYT Richmond posted on Twitter that they had an “enriching evening with Broadway Music Director, Michael Rafter, [who has] coach[ed] several of our alumni!”

Connor Weil, CYT VanPort Alum, makes his appearance on television- he’s the main actor (runner) in a commercial for Sports Authority!

Mayor Jerry Sanders has declared December 8th as Traditions of Christmas Day in San Diego!

We posted some photos on Facebook from the 2011 Mother Goose Parade in San Diego- CCT’s Traditions of Christmas was representing!

Mayor Jerry Sanders Declares December 8th as “Traditions of Christmas Day” in San Diego

Mayor Jerry Sanders has declared December 8th as “Traditions of Christmas Day” in San Diego!

CYT received a public presentation and an official framed document, presented by Field Representative Ron Lacey. To honor “Traditions of Christmas,” Paul and Sheryl Russell wanted to celebrate with community leaders and families.

There were over 300 community leaders and new families at the invitational dress rehearsal of “Traditions of Christmas,” including hundreds of families from Porter Elementary, as well as local non-profits such as Barrio Logan College Institute, Jacob’s Family Foundation, UPAC, Jackie Robinson Foundation, Latino Unity Coalition, Urban League of San Diego County, and military families.

According to Area Coordinator Patricia Chavez, the show went great:

“For many of these families and youth, ‘Traditions of Christmas’ was the first live theater performance they had attended. During intermission, many families thought the show was over. They were delighted to learn it was a short break and more was to come. We actually had to chase after families who were already heading to their cars. Their faces were just precious when they learned there was still more to come!”

Other community leaders that were present include: San Diego Union School District School Board Trustee, Sheila Jackson; Representatives from the office of San Diego Council including President Tony Young; District Representative, Roosevelt Williams; and from the office of Congressman Bob Filner, Representative Tony Cruz.

CYT Events: 12/12-12/18

12/15-12/18: CCT San Diego Presents, Traditions of Christmas.

12/15-12/18: CYT Kansas City Presents, A Christmas Carol.

12/14: CYT Chicago and NISRA’s “Wizard of Oz” Showcase. Every year they partner together to offer a class for special needs children and adults.

12/16: CYT Lafayette participates in their local Jingle Bell Jubilee! Details, here.

12/17: CYT Fredericksburg’s HYPE students’ 2nd Annual Christmas Party.

12/17: Emmy award-winning Broadway Music Director Michael Rafter to teach a Master Class for CYT Richmond.

12/17: CYT Chicago perform alongside BarlowGirl for “Home for Christmas,” a night of holiday music in Elgin to benefit food pantries.

CYT San Diego Welcomes Colleen Kollar Smith

CYT San Diego is happy to welcome a new Managing Director in 2012- Colleen Kollar Smith!

Many of you know Colleen as a member of Lamb’s Players Theatre’s resident ensemble, where she has performed in and/or choreographed over 25 productions. Colleen has also been a close friend to CYT over the years, having taught classes, choreographed/directed shows, and performed for CCT on the Mt. Helix stage in Grease. However, it is Colleen’s experience offstage that qualifies her for the Managing Director position. She has served as the Corporate Secretary at LPT as well as Director of Summer Education and Human Resources Rep. Colleen is currently earning her Masters degree in Non-Profit Leadership and Management at the University of San Diego. She is excited to use her gifts and abilities on the other side of the stage to develop audiences, oversee the business and help raise the necessary funds to run the largest children’s theater program in San Diego and ensure its future.

CYT Weekly Roundup: December 2nd- December 9th

In case you’ve been too busy Christmas shopping to find out what’s been happening in CYT, here’s our weekly roundup:

Improvathon 2012 rules were announced! Watch the promo video to find out the new twists, and meet Cody Combes, the director of Improvathon 2012.

If you’ll be participating in Improvathon, remember to rsvp to our Facebook event.

Paul Russell talks about the “Miracle of CYT” in the latest Founder’s Corner Blog.

CYT Santa Cruz participated in their local Holiday Parade. Start watching the parade (YouTube below) at 37:25 to catch a glimpse of CYT SC.

CYT VanPort Alumni, Joy and Claire Flatz, take on acting as twins. Read the blog, here.

We’ve been updating our CYT Alumni Facebook page. This week we posted pictures of CYT Chicago alumni- if you have any photos you’d like to submit, please email them to Also, be sure to Like the CYT Alumni page to stay in touch with old friends!

CYT VanPort Alumni, Joy and Claire Flatz, Take on Acting as Twins

Not too long ago, GCU Today (Grand Canyon University’s online publication) published an article about CYT VanPort Alum twins (and GCU students), Joy and Claire Flatz.

You may remember we blogged about Joy Flatz back in October- she recently appeared in the first episode of NBC’s “Grimm.” The sisters have also acted in a Nintendo commercial and are Theatre Majors at GCU.

Claire credits God for their success:

“God has really blessed us by just putting opportunities in our path. which we take as a good sign that we’re on the right track… Our agent calls us his angel twins because he doesn’t understand how we can work together so closely and still love each other. We see it as our way to be a light in a dark industry.”

The article stated, “The girls consider themselves lucky to have developed their individuality and self-confidence at a young age. They now prefer being together because of the support it provides for the emotional ups and downs of performing.”

Joy said, “We’re not emotional Siamese twins. But it’s really nice to have someone there to talk things through, to bounce ideas and emotions off of, and to be excited for us. We both know exactly what the other is experiencing.”