Christian Youth Theater (CYT) is an after-school theater arts training program for students ages 4 - 18. Since its founding in 1981 in San Diego, CYT has grown to be the largest youth theater in the nation and is a non-profit 501(c)3 educational organization funded primarily through its tuition, ticket sales, and outside contributions.
CYT San Antonio is one of many CYT affiliates across the country training thousands of students each year and is a licensee of CYT Inc. (Christian Community Theater, Inc., located in San Diego, CA). CYT San Antonio became it’s own expansion in 2011.
Because CYT does not own facilities for classes or productions, the organization works through the local community, utilizing classrooms and stages in churches, schools and local theaters. CYT is not affiliated with a church body, and people of all faiths are welcome.
CYT stands in the forefront in its commitment to the highest ethical, moral, technical and artistic standards of excellence. Instructors are professionals, qualified in teaching and/or performing, who must understand our mission statement, values, objectives and goals. The staff of CYT San Antonio strives to be excellent role models.
Every session (fall, winter and spring) CYT offers theater arts classes for children as an after-school activity. Each CYT across the country conducts three independent 9 week sessions throughout the school year, teaching drama, voice, dance and a broad spectrum of specialty theatrical workshops at weekly two-hour classes. Financial assistance or partial scholarships are available for those in need and sibling discounts are available to multi-children families. Enrolled students have the opportunity to work behind the scenes, or audition and perform on stage in a Broadway-style musical performed for the community.
2. Building leadership skills.
3. Developing a sense of community and fellowship.
4. Providing positive role models for students.
CYT offers three 9-week sessions during the school year (fall, winter and spring.) Children ages 4-18 may select one theater class per session. The cost for a 9-week session is currently $170 per student. A sibling discount is offered (second child $160, third child $150, etc.) A wide variety of classes are offered (core classes in drama, voice, and dance, plus specialty classes which vary from session to session). CYT San Antonio offers small classes (usually 12-14 students) with adequate supervision both inside the classroom (teacher) and outside the classroom (CYT class coordinator). Each class lasts for two hours and runs for 9 weeks. During the 9th class week, a high-energy "SHOWCASE" is presented by each class for the other students as well as family and friends. Every CYT student participates in the showcase.
CYT San Antonio produces at least two Broadway-style musicals for the community each year.
Enrollment in class provides students (ages 8-18) the opportunity to audition for the current production. A $150 per child production fee covers miscellaneous production-related expenses. Additional expenses may include a makeup kit, footwear and a black & white headshot if needed in addition to a parent pass and cast photo (optional).
Students under the age of 8 or those not cast in the show are encouraged to participate in the production in other ways. Depending on age and ability, students (and siblings) can participate on the backstage crew, technical team, or the costume and make-up committees. Students may also choose to work at the concession stand or help usher. There is a small fee for volunteering due to time spent teaching technical skills.
CYT is a family oriented organization dedicated to providing entertaining activities, which can involve the entire family. As such, at least one parent of each student cast in the production must serve on both a pre-show and a show-week Production Committee. Without the support of parents, CYT could not produce high-quality community shows. Parents are the backbone of CYT!
SUMMER DAY CAMPS
Week-long musical theater summer day camps are offered in several locations in the San Antoni area. Staff includes professionals from the CYT Production Teams and CYT Alumni Students. Camps are offered for ages 6-12 and ages 12-18. Team competitions, rotations through daily drama, dance, music, and craft workshops, and an impressive concluding SHOWCASE for family and friends are what CYT Summer Day Camps are all about! Online registration begins February 1.
Not sure? Let’s explore a few common questions to help you decide!
Who can audition for a CYT show?
There are 3 conditions you have to meet to audition for one of our shows.
1 - You must be between the ages of 8-18.
2 - You must be registered for a CYT class during the session you want to audition.
3 - Parent's must attend a mandatory meeting prior to auditioning. This meeting is held on the first night of class.
That’s it! Everyone who is the right age, registered and their parent has attended the mandatory meeting is welcome to try out. We want our cast involved in classes because even though they learn a ton during rehearsals, there are many things we simply cannot cover as we prepare for a big show. Being part of classes helps your child grow in all of their theater skills and gain confidence.
What does my child have to do at an audition?
Your child will be asked to introduce themselves and sing a 60-second portion of a song. We have some great audition tips right here on our website - be sure to check them out! You will also do a dance audition as part of a small group.
When does CYT rehearse?
Our rehearsals are held on Friday evenings from 5:30-8:30 pm and usually 10:00-5:00 pm on Saturdays for approximately 10 weeks. Your child may not be asked to be at rehearsal the entire time every weekend, but they must always be available during those times because the rehearsal schedules can change throughout those 10 weeks and as they get closer to the show.
The week before the show opens is called “tech week”. During that week, we move into the venue where we will hold the show. It’s the week where everything - the costumes, the lights, the set and the show - all come together. Tech week means that there is a rehearsal every night - usually from about 4 -9. Tech week can be exhausting but it’s also a very exciting time for the entire cast and crew as they move towards opening night!
Isn’t CYT a huge commitment?
CYT is truly designed with families in mind and it can’t happen without everyone’s help. When a child auditions, parents are expected to serve on 2 committees. The first committee happens in the weeks leading up to the show (pre-show). The second committee takes place during the two weekends of the shows (show). Our parents do all the work behind the scenes - things like building sets, sewing costumes, making props, supervising cast during rehearsals, promoting the show, running the box office, selling souvenirs, raffles, concessions and many other things. And with so much to do, we’re sure you’ll find something that you can fit into your life. Some committees need people at specific times, while others have work that you can take home. Many hands make light work and volunteering helps you get to know other CYT families at the same time. Many parents can tell you of life-long friendships that have blossomed as part of CYT.
A lot of our parents love being a part of CYT as much as their kids. It’s one of those things where you really have to try it to see what it’s really about. So why not try? Come and share your gifts and talents with CYT. You may even discover some gifts and talents you didn’t even know you had!