Congratulations to Samuel Meyer from CYT North Idaho, for winning the 2019 National My CYT Story Competition! Check out his winning entry below.

I was born almost 1 month early, oxygen deprived, with my umbilical cord wrapped around my neck, weighing a mere 5 pounds. I suffered countless sensory issues my first few years of life. In my early elementary school days I received several years of pretty intense therapy, enabling me to finally ride a bike and walk up the stairs one step at a time! As an adolescent I continued to struggle through life, doing the best I could. I gave swimming a try. It was okay, but eventually I became disinterested in it. I even tried my hand at fencing! Both activities were an alright fit for me, but I still felt like I needed a place to belong. I had a couple of good friends at school, but I found myself mostly alone during recess wandering the playground, not fitting in with the kids playing organized games.

In 2016 I got my first taste of acting when I played the part of Joseph in a shortened version of “The Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat.” I had stumbled upon an undiscovered talent! I realized that I could act and sing! That same year I enrolled in my first CYT class, Core Drama. I was on to something! I continued taking numerous classes and realized my love for theater! I attended nearly every single production, but didn’t feel confident enough to audition for an actual show. Every once in a while I would take a look at the rehearsal schedule and decide that the rigor would be way too overwhelming for me.

While taking Improv in the fall of 2017, I had a number of fellow students and adults comment that I would make a great Mr. Tumnus in the upcoming production, Narnia. It was at that point I decided to take a look at the rehearsal schedule once again. I knew in my heart it was time to take the leap and play my brave card! I did it! I got the part of Tumnus! I will never forget the impact this show and role had on my life. This experience touched me to my very core. I knew my life would never be the same. I had officially caught the acting bug! My next CYT opportunity involved me playing Nicholas in Hercules. I will never forget the standing ovation I received in response to my audition for My Son Pinocchio Jr. As a result I was cast as the one and only Stromboli. In addition to these characters, I also got to be in a 1940’s Rogers & Hammerstein showcase, as well as a member of the CYT North Idaho Improv team! My involvement with CYT has allowed me to be a part of something absolutely amazing that gives kids opportunities that they might not otherwise have. I realized that it is where I belong. I belong to a very special group of people that is encouraging, loving, enthusiastic, and accepting. There really is nothing else like CYT. I will forever be thankful for all that it has to offer and the tremendous and overwhelming ways that it has touched my life. My plan is to continue on until I turn 19 and soak up every single ounce of everything that CYT has to offer!

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