Current Staff Members:

Angelic Navarro

Angelic is delighted to be the Artistic Director of CYT Santa Cruz! Her first memory was dancing on stage at the age of 4 and she has loved the stage ever since. She has over 30 years of multi-dance training, over 20 years of teaching experience, and 7 years of Theater experience. Angelic is also a mother of 3, a dance instructor, and the dance and theater teacher at Monte Vista Christian School. She has written and directed over a dozen original musical productions for the Spring Hill School Community, and directed and choreographed over 10 musicals with All About Theatre. She appreciates CYT for its mission to “developing character and creativity in kids of all ages through quality theater training in the arts..". She believes CYT is a great blend for her love of Musical Theater and her convictions of living out a purposeful Christ-filled life. She hopes to leave a legacy that is sincere and authentic, written on the hearts of those she shares life with. 2 Corinthians 3:2-3 “You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everyone. You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts”.


Denise Ahlstrom

Denise is honored to serve CYT Santa Cruz as the Managing Director. Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, His compassions never fail. They are new every morning, great is Your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22,23


Tamara Dunton

Tamara is excited to join the CYT Santa Cruz Staff as the Assistant Managing Director and bookkeeper.


Michelle Bjorkman

Michelle is excited to be joining the CYT family as Branch Coordinator and instructor, having graduated with honors from SJSU with a B.A. in Child Development, and a concentration in theater and dance. During her 30+ years in the arts, she has worked with performers of all ages, directing and choreographing dozens of productions in professional, children's, community, and educational theater environments. She has served the Christian community as an elementary school teacher and is now currently homeschooling her own four children. Michelle has also worked locally as a dance company manager and class instructor, specializing in Jazz, Tap, Hip Hop, Modern, and Zumba dance fitness. Each summer, she looks forward to the highlight of leading weekly dance parties for the Mount Hermon Family Camps.


Marie Marheineke

Marie is excited to join CYT as the Branch Coordinator for Classes. "Spread love everywhere you go; first of all in your own house. Give love to your children, to your wife or husband, to a next door neighbor. Let no one ever come to you without leaving better or happier. Be the living expression of God's kindness; kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile; kindness in your warm greeting. ~ Mother Teresa


Shannon Lenz

Shannon is excited to join our team as our Branch Site Coordinator! She comes to CYT with a wide educational background including a Multi Subject Teaching Credential. She also holds a BA from UCSC in American Studies with an emphasis in how The Arts shaped our US History Narrative. Ask her sometime about her internship at The National Gallery of Art in DC! Before she was a Mama and homeschool parent she taught both in a traditional school and church ministries for 10+ years, from PreK to High School. She enjoys building community, talking and listening to people's stories, brain storming and seeing others thrive! She has a personal love for dance, music, drums, slap-stick and improv. She feels blessed to have a place here at CYT where her entire family can feel so at home, enriched and entertained. The growth that she sees in our CYT students is inspiring and even staggering! She also admires and wants to support how our teens carry themselves and mentor the young ones. "Live a life worthy of the calling you have received." ~ Ephesians 4:1


Cheryl Aguirre

Cheryl is our Fundraiser Chair!


Jennifer McPherson

Jennifer is excited to be joining the CYT staff. Her family has been part of CYT for the last 4 years. Her children have grown in confidence and character through the community and support that can be found at CYT. Jennifer looks forward to serving the people who have embraced her family and made a difference in their lives. Isaiah 43:1