Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Chandler Metcalf - This dancer will move you!

I love the process of finding a story and doing my part to help bring it life. I was reading a magazine on a recent flight and saw a spread about the Sacramento Ballet children’s audition for the Nutcracker. Something in my heart told me there was a really amazing kid in this bunch. They all are - but I was looking for Chandler.

I called the public relations director and said, “I’m looking for someone who has overcome amazing odds to shine on stage.” She said, “That’s Chandler Metcalf. He has Cerebral Palsy and is a dancer in the Nutcracker.”

The Cerebral Palsy diagnosis is not why I was interested. I was interested because there are about 600 children each year involved in the Sacramento Ballet – but the one kid we discussed was Chandler. We set the shoot up for the first night of dress rehearsal.

All I had been told was that Chandler had an amazing soul and was in a wheel chair. Chandler’s mother and father brought him into the dressing room. Yes, there was the wheel chair. I saw wings. This young man reminds me of some of the inspired moments of Mattie Stepanek. Google video search Mattie’s moving story on Oprah if you don’t know who he is. Chandler has one of the best perspectives on life that I have ever seen. I can honestly tell you that his outlook on life is life altering for him, his family and anyone who meets him. It is easy to see that his passion for life is his purpose of living. Simply put – this 10 year old has a brilliant gift of looking at living in a way that sets him free from his disease.

When you watch Chandler dance you will see a young boy dancing to a beat of his own.
Watch Chandler’s story under my “Watch Video” segment. I’ll have more on Chandler in an upcoming half hour special I am working on, which will air at 7pm on Wednesday, April 29th.