Julie Hunt began her journey with CYT North Idaho when her daughter wanted to audition for the first show, a tour group of A Christmas Carol. They only had one other boy audition and were worried whether they could actually make this first show a reality. She brought her two boys and CYTNI has been a staple in our community ever since. For two of her kids, the performing bug has never left. Julie was the bookkeeper from 2008 to 2013 and then again beginning in 2017. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in accounting and is a retired CPA. She also is a Certified Biofeedback Specialist and helps people manage stress.
Jessica Belisle is ecstatic to be on staff at CYT North Idaho as the Artistic Director! Jessica is a CYT Spokane Alumna, her love for theater started when she was 8 years old and she saw her first CYT show (Sleeping Beauty)! Jessica studied History and Theater at Carroll College in Helena Montana and has been working with CYT since 2011 as a Production Intern, Intern Artistic Director, HYPE Advisor, Camp Director Teacher and Director! Jessica firmly believes that through theater arts education a student can develop greater self awareness, empathy, discipline, teamwork, focus, passion, joy and confidence! Her goal is to cultivate an environment where every class, every production, every interaction, allows each student passing through CYT’s doors to feel, included, uplifted and inspired. She hopes that the vibrant CYT culture will build each student’s skills and provide opportunities for those skills to be grown! Jessica thanks the CYT board for the opportunity to work with this remarkable program and she can’t wait to get to know each and every one of you!
Chapter Coordinator for Classes & Shows
Alex Carey is a professional singing actor who has appeared in a wide range of musical theatre and opera. He holds an MM in Voice Performance from the Chicago College of Performing Arts, and has years of improv comedy experience. From mainstage productions to tours, Alex has established himself as "A stylish singer" and "splendid with physical comedy" (Hyde Park Herald).
Chloe Turnbull is a CYT North Idaho Alumni and graduate of Coeur d’Alene Charter Academy and NIC. Currently attending Grand Canyon University and working toward a degree in Elementary Education. She was involved in CYT for ten years performing in over 20 shows. You may remember Chloe cast as Glinda in The Wizard of Oz, A Dream Dancer in Narnia, Snow White in Snow White and the Prince, with a favorite being a Disciple in Godspell.
Hi! My name is Jenny. I’ve been married to my husband Josh for 15 years and our son Javin has been involved with CYT for a while now. I auditioned for my first CCT performance this year where I was cast as the role of Queen Constantina in the production of Cinderella. I have been performing off and on since I was young. I played the part of Cinderella and Ariel at Disneyland for 3 years and I've sang on church worship teams since 2012. I love all the beautiful things that CYT is about and I’m so thankful to be part of this theater family.
Jessica Belisle has been the Artistic Director at CYT North Idaho for 1 year. Jessica is a CYT Spokane Alumna, her love for theater started when she was 8 years old and she saw her first CYT show (Sleeping Beauty)! Jessica studied History and Theater at Carroll College in Helena Montana, has been working with CYT since 2011 and has been on the artistic team for 15 CYT productions. Jessica firmly believes that through theater arts education a student can develop greater self awareness, empathy, discipline, teamwork, focus, passion, joy and confidence! Her goal is to cultivate an environment where every class, every production, every interaction, allows each student passing through CYT’s doors to feel, included, uplifted and inspired. Jessica is incredibly excited to be taking on such a delightful classic as Joseph and the Amazing Technicolored Dream Coat!
Karen Hunt is a passionate performer and producer of opera, concert, art song, and theatrical music. A native of North Idaho, the coloratura soprano has frequently worked with Inland Northwest Opera in both mainstage and outreach productions, as well as the University of Idaho Opera Workshop. Her diverse repertoire includes roles such as La Comtesse Adèle/Le Comte Ory, Drusilla/The Coronation of Poppea and Samuel Pummill’s new opera Opera Noir. Other favorite roles include Gretel/Hansel und Gretel, Cendrillon/Cendrillon, and Julie Jordan/Carousel. This spring she made her debut with Transgressive Theatre-Opera in their concerts of Le Comte Ory and Letters of Love and Subterfuge, and also performed Finette in Offenbach’s Bagatelle and Sophie in von Suppe’s The Finishing School at Roosevelt University, where she has just finished with her M.M. in Voice Performance as a student of Judith Haddon. Her oratorio repertoire includes the soprano solos in Schubert’s Mass in G and Samuel Pummill’s Transanguineal Requiem, and Marion in Handel’s Israel in Egypt. Her art song repertoire is more wide-ranging, with a special emphasis on American art song, including the works of emerging composer Jesse Hampsch. Outside of singing, she is also a director, producer, and volunteer. In these roles, she is a facilitator of meaningful and empathetic programming that brings together community, inspires individuals, and shapes the character of patrons and performers alike. In 2019, Karen founded The Valkyrie Ensemble, a non-profit company whose mission is to promote and empower women in and through music. She is currently serving as the organization’s General and Artistic Director with several productions slated for the coming year. In her senior year of high school, she organized a 24-hour immersive Homeless Awareness event for her school while serving as the president of the Key Club (Kiwanis International). At the University of Idaho she served in leadership positions with student chapters of the American Choral Director’s Association and Sigma Alpha Iota, as well as serving as a student ambassador for both the Lionel Hampton School of Music and the College of Letters, Arts, and Social Sciences. As a director and producer, she has worked professionally with Coeur d’Alene Summer Theatre. Karen also holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Idaho, where she graduated magna cum laude. When she is not pursuing the arts, she loves to cuddle with her corgi, Rosie and read Jane Austen, J.R.R. Tolkien and Harry Potter.
Laura Foster is an elementary school teacher, and has been teaching now for over 23 years. She has been married to her husband for 20 years and together, they have a beautiful 13 year old daughter. Laura discovered a love for theater through her daughter. They started attending musicals together when Aleesia was just 3 years old. Both of them fell in love with the magic of the stage. As soon as Alee was old enough, she started taking CYT camps and classes. She was cast in her first show at age 7 and hasn’t stopped since. During Alee’s shows, Laura started volunteering more time, and learning all there was to know. Along with her daughter, she fell more in love with theater. A few years back, she taught one of the Our Gang Classes for CYT. She loved that so much, she knew she wanted to bring theater to the school where she taught. She, along with a couple of her coworkers, embarked on a journey to start an after school Drama Club, which quickly became a huge success. The first year, they produced the show Seussical Kids, where the students brought theater magic to the Garwood stage. The second year, they embarked on the musical, Lion King Kids. Unfortunately, like so many other things, it was cut short too early when COVID struck, ending the show 2 weeks before the kids were to perform. This year, Laura decided to take on the challenge of teaching online for her school district in their new Lakeland Online Academy. She is currently teaching 3rd grade online and loving it! She is excited to embark on teaching virtually for CYT this session. She is hoping to bring her enjoyment and love of online teaching and learning to the students at CYT.
Laurel Vanderhoof has been a part of CYT North Idaho for the last 12 years performing in about 20 shows, as well as teacher assisting, and is excited to share her experiences with the new generation of upcoming artists. She is currently working her way into traveling and seeing the world. Her love for the arts and teaching exudes in great amounts. She would love to be teaching primary education in her future. CYT has been her whole life, and Laurel is thrilled and passionate about being a kick starter for some of the next stars of the stage.
Paisley DuPuis is a CYT North Idaho alumni, her first show with CYT dating back to 2008. As well as being involved in CYT Paisley is also a trained dancer and has taken classes in ballet, jazz, lyrical, tap and hip hop and has been teaching dance for the past five years. She recently graduated from North Idaho College with an AA in music. Paisley has loved being involved over the years in many different aspects of CYT including being a CYT camp counselor and choreographer , teaching classes and choreographing for both CYT and CCT productions. She is very excited to be teaching for CYT this session and to be able to be a part of a new generation of CYT students experience in the program.