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Mychal's Message Slates Two Performances November 16, 2018

Due to popular demand in its previous four years, consistently selling out the theater for its one-night engagements, the fifth annual "Wish" production hosted by nonprofit organization Mychal's Message has added a second performance. Dinner will begin at 5:30 p.m., and the show will start at 7 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 9, and Monday, Dec. 10, at Dutch Apple Dinner Theatre, 510 Centerville Road, Lancaster.

This year's show has been conceived, written, choreographed, and performed entirely by volunteer youths. It features 36 performers from kindergarten to college who have been rehearsing since September. Past audience members have remarked about the professional quality of the production by these children and teenagers whose collective experience includes performances at American Music Theatre, Sight & Sound, Dutch Apple Dinner Theatre, and the Fulton Theatre, among many others.

"Wish" is far more than just dinner and a show. As the performers relate, the production is a chance to bring Christmas wishes to children who might not otherwise have them.

"It helps poor people by giving them hope and love from Jesus," said 8-year-old Allegra Essis, a student at Saint Leo the Great School, noting that Jesus' birth is celebrated on Christmas.

"Being part of the 'Wish' program has made me want to reach out to those who are less fortunate," said Cate Chadwick, 14, a student at Conestoga Valley High School and one of eight lead dancers in this year's show. "(It also gives) me more opportunity to do what I love - dance and perform with friends."

Everly Foster, 13, a student at Camp Hill Middle School, travels a moderate distance to be part of "Wish" but said she would not miss it. "Being part of 'Wish' means celebrating the true meaning of Christmas," she said. In the upcoming presentation, Everly has a solo in "The Little Drummer Boy," as well as a duet, "Isle of Hope," that she predicted will be a tear-jerker for the audience. Everly said she enjoys being at "Wish" rehearsals. "When I'm with my 'Wish' family, it reminds me of what is important in life," she remarked.

Working in partnership with the Lancaster Office for Displaced Families, Mychal's Message selects local families to receive a full-course Christmas dinner and gifts for their children on the morning of Christmas Eve. Each child receives one item they have said they would most like to receive on Christmas. At the top of this year's wish list are Nerf toys, Lego sets, board games, and jewelry-making kits. All funds raised from "Wish'" ticket sales directly benefit the selected families and children.

Tickets are required to attend the dinner and the show and may be purchased by calling the box office at 717-898-1900 or visiting and clicking on "Special Events."

Mychal's Message was founded by Shannon Hickey Lapp in 2002 when she was 11 years old. Her simple idea to collect socks for the homeless grew into a ministry that aims to meet the needs of the homeless and poor. To date, Mychal's Message has distributed more than 500,000 new items to men, women, and children including coats and blankets, diapers and toiletries, sleeping mats and pillows, hats and gloves, toys and teddy bears, underwear and socks, and more. For more information, readers may find Mychal's Message on Facebook or visit


Romain Cast In Leading Role November 16, 2018

Matt Romain of Elizabethtown is performing his first leading role in Shakespeare's "Pericles, Prince of Tyre," at Gamut Theatre, 15 N. Fourth St., Harrisburg.

Romain is a 2012 graduate of Elizabethtown Area High School and has continued his education in the theater arts program at HACC, Central Pennsylvania's Community College; Gretna Theatre Summer Internship Program; and the Popovsky Performing Arts Studio. He has also performed in other roles on stage at Gamut Theatre, Gretna Theatre, and the Rose Lehrman Arts Center.

Romain has been cast as Pericles in Gamut's signature fall production. The play is directed by veteran Thomas Weaver with collaborative choreography by Rachita Menon.

Performances of "Pericles, Prince of Tyre" will take place on Friday, Nov. 23, and Saturday, Nov. 24, at 7:30 p.m. and on Sunday, Nov. 25, at 2:30 p.m. For tickets and information, readers may visit or call the box office at 717-238-4111.


Boehm's Chapel To Host Advent Service November 15, 2018

Boehm's Chapel Society will commemorate the start of the Christmas season by holding its annual Advent service on Sunday, Dec. 2, at 3 p.m. at the historic Boehm's Chapel, 13 W. Boehm's Road, Willow Street. Executive director Dolores Myers noted that the service time has been changed from the traditional vespers.

"(We scheduled it) so everyone can be home before dark," she explained.

The service will take the form of the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols. Boehm's Chapel Society members and friends will read the Scriptures that foretell and retell the story of Jesus Christ's birth. Joanne Swords-Wang will lead the music, performing solos on harp and accompanying congregational singing on keyboard.

"The congregation can participate. Most people like to sing traditional carols," Myers remarked. "It's a great way to kick off the season."

Swords-Wang has been involved with music practically her entire life. She played cello in school and studied piano for many years. Swords-Wang worked as a pianist and organist at Boehm's United Methodist Church (UMC), which grew out of the chapel. She now serves Saint Paul's UMC in Mountville and Ebenezer Evangelical Congregational Church in Brownstown. Singing opera was a hobby that led her to the harp. While performing with the Lancaster Opera Workshop in the mid-1990s, Swords-Wang had the opportunity to observe Jane Brye's skill at the strings.

"She played her harp so beautifully," Swords-Wang recalled.

Interested in the instrument, Swords-Wang purchased a kit and built a harp herself with some assistance from her father. Once it was successfully assembled, she took lessons from Brye's sister, Rebekah Kauffmann Weaver. Ever since that first year of lessons, Swords-Wang has been in demand at weddings and on other special occasions. This will be the second time she has performed for the chapel's Advent service, and she is looking forward to playing in the 1791 structure, which will be minimally decorated with holly, ivy, and candles.

"It's stark and echoey, and it has great acoustics," Swords-Wang commented.

"Early Methodist services were pretty plain," Myers pointed out. "The Mennonites were a big influence here."

The public is welcome to attend the Advent service free of charge, but donations will be accepted. The doors to the chapel will open at 2 p.m.

For more information, readers may visit or call 717-872-4133.


Theater Majors Will Present November 15, 2018

Senior theater majors at York College, 441 Country Club Road, will present their capstone projects during the college's annual Director's Fest at 7:30 p.m. from Thursday, Nov. 29, through Saturday, Dec. 1, in the Perko Black Box Theatre. Tickets are free, but reservations are recommended. Seating reservations are available at or by calling the box office at 717-600-3868. A reception and talkback with directors, actors and playwrights will be held after the Nov. 29 opening night performance in the second-floor lobby of the Waldner Performing Arts Center.

Lyle Sweppenheiser of Factoryville, last seen on stage as King Louis XVI in "Marie Antoinette," is directing "James Franco and Me: An Unauthorized Satire" as his senior capstone. York College's production will be the college premiere of the play written by Kevin Broccoli, who will be in residence.

Craig Babineaux of Odenton, Md., who audiences may recognize as Ira Aldridge from last spring's "Red Velvet," will portray the title role in "Nat Turner in Jerusalem." Turner was an African-American slave who led a two-day rebellion of slaves and free African-Americans in Virginia in 1831.


Big Big Jazz Band To Play November 15, 2018

The Big Big Jazz Band will perform at Lancaster Catholic High School, 650 Juliette Ave., Lancaster, on Saturday, Dec. 1, from 7:30 to 10 p.m. in the cafeteria. There will be music and dancing, and snacks and beverages will be served.

Admission will be free, with only those age 21 and over allowed to attend. For more information, readers may call 717-509-03130 or visit


Cafe To Host Second Chances Band November 15, 2018

The Second Chances Band will perform at Emmaus Road Cafe on Saturday, Nov. 24. The event will begin at 7 p.m.

The Second Chances Band made its debut in 2012 when lead guitarist Dave Hungerford met fellow guitarist Tony McWilliams during an interaction at a used car lot, and they discovered their shared love for music. Vocals range from solos to three-part harmony, accompanied by vocalist Rebecca Martin and Dave's wife, vocalist Joy Hungerford. Mark Witmer recently joined the band as a percussionist. The Second Chances Band plays covers of songs from the 1930s to the present.

Admission to the event is free. Emmaus Road Cafe offers coffee beverages, Italian sodas, and baked goods for sale. The cafe is located at 1886 Lincoln Highway East in Lancaster. Emmaus Road Cafe can be contacted at 717-478-3672 or


A-Y/Dancers To Perform November 9, 2018

The Durang Dance Collective will present A-Y/Dancers at The Trust Performing Arts Center, 37 N. Market St., Lancaster, on Saturday, Nov. 17, at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Nov. 18, at 2 p.m.

A-Y/Dancers is a new repertory dance company based in New York's Hudson Valley. The group's program features three choreographers who represent the past, present, and future of American concert dance. The program begins with a collage of solos, trios, and quartets by Merce Cunningham, a 20th-century choreographer. The second piece is Doug Varone's critically acclaimed 2003 work, "Of the Earth Far Below," a group dance featuring a cast of eight dancers against Steve Reich's "Triple Quartet." Completing the program will be a work by Danika Bigley and Emmanuel Williams, selected from the Durang Dance Collective's choreographer's showcase. Hannah Garner is also credited with choreography in the program.

Founders and directors performing include Erin Landers, Claire Deane, and Sienna Blaw. They will be joined by guest dancers Piper Dye, Lauren Twomley, Emily Kessler, Madeline Robertson, Jackie Calle, and Paulina Meneses.

A dessert reception will follow. Tickets are available for purchase, with discounts available for students with ID, as well as for groups, seniors, and veterans. For tickets and more information, readers may call the box office, located at Lancaster Bible College's Good Shepherd Chapel, at 717-560-8241 or visit


Vocal Harmonix Invites Women To Rehearse November 9, 2018

Vocal Harmonix, a women's a cappella entertainment group based in Lancaster County, is offering women of all ages an opportunity to perform at the Ware Center, 42 N. Prince St., Lancaster.

Women curious about the chorus are welcome to spend time with the group and then sing on stage as the group presents the holiday show "Listen ... Remember ... Believe!" at the Ware Center on Sunday, Dec. 9, at 2 p.m. The show will also feature the Red Rose Men's Chorus.

Any woman who loves to sing and perform can be part of the show's finale when the two choruses sing in eight-part harmony. Interested women may attend 30-minute rehearsal sessions at the Vocal Harmonix rehearsal site, Lancaster Church of the Brethren, 1601 Sunset Ave., Lancaster, and learn a part.

Rehearsals began on Nov. 12 and will continue at 7 p.m. on Mondays, Nov. 19 and 26 and Dec. 3. Women are asked to arrive at 6:45 p.m.

There is a nominal fee to take part, which covers materials. For those who decide to join Vocal Harmonix, the fee will be applied toward the membership dues.

Preregistration is encouraged by calling Michele at 717-625-2279. To learn more, readers may visit or find the group's page on Facebook.


VFW Post Plans Dance, Craft Show November 8, 2018

Red Lion VFW Post 1446 has planned two upcoming special events.

On Saturday, Nov. 17, from 7 to 11 p.m., the post will hold a dance featuring the band Kodiak.

A craft and vendor fair will be held on Saturday, Nov. 24, from noon to 5 p.m.

All post events are open to the public.


"Tea For Three" Scheduled November 8, 2018

Emmy Award-winning actress Elaine Bromka will star in "Tea for Three: Lady Bird, Pat, and Betty," a one-woman play at the Ware Center, 42 N. Prince St., Lancaster, on Wednesday, Nov. 14, at 7:30 p.m.

"Tea for Three" is a fictionalized account based on the lives of first ladies Lady Bird Johnson, Pat Nixon, and Betty Ford, set in the White House during the years of 1968, 1974 and 1976. The play seeks to humanize the political scene by looking at the life of each first lady as she nears the end of her White House stay. Inspired by her roles in the PBS show "The Presidents," Bromka collaborated with playwright Eric H. Weinberger to create the show.

A free 20-minute Audience Perspective talk by a local scholar will begin at 6:45 p.m. to provide insight and perspective related to the performance.

Bromka's stage credits include Broadway and off-Broadway, and she has also done television work. She has played lead roles at regional theaters across the U.S.

To purchase tickets and for more information, readers may visit or call 717-871-7600. Tickets are also available in person at the Ware Center box office and at the Student Memorial Center, Room 103, on the Millersville University campus.


Local Musician To Perform At Kennedy Center November 8, 2018

Fifteen-year-old accordionist Cody McSherry has been asked to perform at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. McSherry hails from Lancaster.

Though he may be young, Cody is a veteran performer, having performed on both the East Coast and West Coast as well as in Germany. He has won many national and international competitions, most recently at the Leavenworth (Washington) International Accordion Celebration. He began his musical studies with piano at the age of 4 and accordion at the age of 6, adding additional instruments to his repertoire in the ensuing years.

Cody is an accomplished musician, playing three different types of accordion (piano accordion, diatonic button accordion, and chromatic accordion). Additionally, Cody plays the piano, pipe organ, and theater organ and is an award-winning singer. He also fronts his own polka band, Polterabend (German for "noisy night"). Cody also performs in local theater productions, most recently as one of the lead performers in Servant Stage's summer production of "I'll Fly Away."

For the hour-long Kennedy Center event, Cody will perform on both piano accordion and diatonic button accordion and sing. His performance will be in the Kennedy Center's Millennium Theater on Tuesday, Nov. 20, at 6 p.m. Admission is free, and no tickets are needed. Those who cannot attend in person can watch the performance on the internet, as the performance will be live-streamed on the theater's website, The performance will also be archived in the theater's archives.


Concert Will Feature Flutist, Pianist November 8, 2018

Lancaster Church of the Brethren's Starlight Tea Concert Series will continue with a concert by a pair of international soloists on Saturday, Nov. 17, at 7 p.m. at the church, 1601 Sunset Ave., Lancaster. Brazilian flutist Guilherme Andreas and Chinese pianist Gianne Ge Zhu will join forces to present a program titled "The Sound of Brazilian Classical Music." The concert will be presented as part of the church's weekend-long Celebration of Global Missions event.

Born in Jiangsu, China, Zhu began her piano study at age 5. In 2008, she came to the United States to further her training at the Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University, where she earned her bachelor's and master's degrees. She is currently pursuing a Doctor of Musical Arts in piano performance and pedagogy at James Madison University (JMU). She has competed and won awards at various international competitions, including being named a finalist at the Brescia International Piano Competition in Italy.

Andreas began his musical journey in his church's wind ensemble in Brasilia, Brazil. He earned his bachelor's degree at the University of Brasilia and then was appointed principal flute of the Brazilian Marine Wind Symphony in Rio de Janeiro. He continued his flute studies and earned a graduate diploma in chamber music at the Brazilian Music Conservatory. He also studied at JMU and the Peabody Institute. Currently, Andreas serves as music director of Grace City Church of Baltimore and was recently appointed principal flute of the chamber orchestra Symphony Number One. He has won various competitions, including first prize in the São Paulo Symphony Masterclass Competition. He made his debut at Carnegie Hall performing with the New England Symphonic Ensemble.

All Starlight Tea concerts are free, and a freewill offering is received. A tea and cookies reception with the artists will follow.

For more information, readers may call 717-397-4751 or visit


"A Christmas Carol" To Open November 7, 2018

Open Stage, 25 N. Court St., Harrisburg, will present "A Christmas Carol" from Saturday, Dec. 1, to Sunday, Dec. 23, in its intimate 120-seat theater. The seasonal favorite, a reimagining of Charles Dickens' classic story, will follow Ebenezer Scrooge, the miserly owner of a counting house.

Performances will take place at 7:30 p.m. on Thursdays, Dec. 6 and 20; Fridays, Dec. 7 and 21; and Saturdays, Dec. 1, 8, and 22. Matinees will begin at 2 p.m. on Dec. 8 and Sundays, Dec. 2 to 23. A matinee will also be offered at 11 a.m. on Dec. 22. A 7 p.m. performance will be held on Sunday, Dec. 9.

Tickets and details may be purchased by contacting 717-232-6736 or or by visiting Student and group discounts are available.


Cafe To Host SongSmith November 7, 2018

Lynn Royer and Steve Davis, together known as SongSmith, will perform at Emmaus Road Cafe on Saturday, Nov. 17. Doors will open at 7 p.m., and the music will begin at 7:30 p.m.

Royer has provided her vocal abilities to a number of musical projects both acoustic and electric. She has several songwriting awards to her credit. She is also a teacher for children with special needs.

Davis, who is also a freelance graphic designer, has an extensive and varied background in music. On the acoustic and electric guitars, he plays music in a wide range of styles, and with the use of loop, bass and harmony pedals, he can make the SongSmith duo sound like an entire band. Steve also adds lead and harmony vocals to the mix.

SongSmith performs throughout southcentral Pennsylvania. To learn more about the group, readers may visit

Admission to the event is free. Emmaus Road Cafe offers coffee beverages, Italian sodas, and baked goods for sale. The cafe is located at 1886 Lincoln Highway East in Lancaster. Emmaus Road Cafe can be contacted at 717-478-3672 or


College To Host Jazz Concert November 7, 2018

York College, 441 Country Club Road, will welcome the John Patitucci Trio to its Waldner Performing Arts Center at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 18. The event, made possible thanks to a gift from the Boustead Family Foundation, is open to the public free of charge.

Patitucci has been at the forefront of the jazz world for more than 30 years and is active in all styles of music. He is a three-time Grammy Award winner, has been nominated more than 14 times, and has played on many other Grammy Award-winning recordings.

For more information, readers may call 717-815-1584.


Performers Sought For "Showcasing YoCo!" November 7, 2018

York County Economic Alliance (YCEA) is seeking performers for "Showcasing YoCo!" on Friday, April 12, 2019, during YCEA's annual dinner. The evening will showcase York County talent, with coordination and feature performance by Central City Orchestra.

Talents may include singing, songwriting, instrumental, comedy, and more. Approximately three five-minute spots are available. For more information and a submission form, readers may contact Katie Mahoney at

The deadline for submission is Friday, Nov. 16. All submissions must include a link to a performance. Winners will be announced by Saturday, Dec. 1.


Northeastern To Stage Play November 6, 2018

Northeastern Dramatics will present the murder mystery/comedy "13 Past Midnight" on Friday, Nov. 16, and Saturday, Nov. 17, at 7 p.m. in the auditorium at Northeastern High School, 300 High St., Manchester. The play features a cast of 16 juniors and seniors, with Nate Tully, Brynn MacDonald, Paul Heard, Amy Rizzo, Zoey Pew and Trent Stauffer as featured seniors.

Ticket prices for "13 Past Midnight" have been set for adults and for students and senior citizens. Tickets can be purchased from cast members or at the door.


Oldies Band To Present Concert November 2, 2018

Reminisce, known as "The Oldies/Motown Dance Band," will present an oldies concert on Thursday, Nov. 15, from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at Paramount Senior Living at Lancaster County, 2760 Maytown Road, Maytown. People of all ages are invited.

During the evening, unopened toys will be collected for Toys for Tots. Community members may drop off donations for Toys for Tots through Christmas Eve, Monday, Dec. 24.

Reminisce is a nine-piece oldies dance band known for its harmonies. Its song list includes hits from The Temptations, Dion and The Belmonts, The Drifters, The Ronettes, Aretha Franklin, Martha and The Vandellas, The Isley Brothers, and other classic artists.

The ticket cost includes a ticket to enter a giveaway drawing, as well as light refreshments and beverages. Tickets are available at Paramount Senior Living at Lancaster County and at

For more information, readers may call 717-468-5155.


Guitarist Will Perform Concert November 2, 2018

Guitarist Maria Wilson will perform at Emmaus Road Cafe on Saturday, Nov. 10. Doors will open at 7 p.m., and the music will begin at 7:30 p.m.

A premier solo guitarist and guitar teacher with five albums of her own, Brooklyn-born Wilson has been performing professionally for over 20 years and has performed at venues throughout the East Coast. Music from her CD "Generations" is being promoted in the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Belgium, and Sweden for television and film. To learn more, readers may visit

Admission to the event is free. Emmaus Road Cafe offers coffee beverages, Italian sodas, and baked goods for sale. The cafe is located at 1886 Lincoln Highway East in Lancaster. Emmaus Road Cafe can be contacted via email at or at 717-478-3672.


Chorus Sets "A Salute To Veterans" November 2, 2018

In honor of veterans, the Hershey Community Chorus Ensemble will present "A Salute to Veterans" on Friday, Nov. 16, at 2 p.m. at the Lebanon Veterans Affairs Hospital, 1700 S. Lincoln Ave., Lebanon. The program will take place in the lobby of Building 17.

The 30-member ensemble, under the direction of James Hoffmann, will sing several traditional patriotic numbers including "God Bless America," "The Battle Hymn of the Republic," and "Let There Be Peace on Earth." They will also sing "The Armed Forces - The Pride of America," a medley of the music of each branch of the Armed Forces. The colors will be presented by the Color Guard of VFW Post 23.

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