A Musical Christmas Card
(York Little Theatre image)
York Little Theatre has the perfect answer for families who want to enjoy the festive holiday spirit without the hassle of handling the lights and decorations themselves.

“This is the second year for ‘A Musical Christmas Card,'” says executive director Lyn Bergdoll. “We're really hoping to make this an annual family tradition for families in the York area. The songs are different, but the show will feature the same musical revue with plenty of singing and dancing.”

The all-ages holiday variety show runs Friday through Sunday at the theater, with visits to three unique musical Christmas cards from the Sun Belt, the North Pole and the Holy Land.

The show features a mix of lesser-known music and well-known Christmas favorites. The cast of locals features adults as well as a children's singing ensemble of students from the theater's “Musical Theatre Blast” class, led by theater veteran and songwriter Jacquie Sutton.

“Jacquie and her group are a truly unique feature to the show,” Bergdoll says. “It makes the show local and shows that no matter what your age, you have a great contribution to make.”

“Such a joy”: Local doctor Robina Santaniello is a member of the cast.

“I've been involved with the York Little Theatre since childhood,” Santaniello says. “It is such a joy to work with friends who you haven't seen in a while and make new ones along the way.”

Santaniello, who performs as a soprano, described “A Musical Christmas Card” as “having beautiful harmony, and the children are always a great joy to see and quite an audience favorite.”

“I love doing the Christmas shows,” Santaniello continued. “It's something everyone enjoys and, as a family practice doctor, my patients love seeing their physician on stage. It's just a lot of fun for all of us.”

The community: Now in its 80th season and back on its financial feet, the theater prides itself on its connections to the York community.

“Only about 12 little theaters in the country can say they've made it 80 years, so York can be very, very proud,” Bergdoll says.

The theater building itself recently underwent a facelift with the help of community support.

“York is such a wonderful community,” Bergoll says. “Every company the theater has gone to has helped with the building fund. The theater is really a grass roots movement and a part of the history of the community. The York Little Theatre has almost been reborn and given a new beginning.”

Community members can become involved in any aspect of the theater, from being an audience member to helping out as an usher, costumer or set builder.

The theater's new season of classes starts Jan. 12, with options including magic tricks, hair and makeup preparation, sound design and more.

“The York Little Theatre offers a variety of classes to benefit community members of any age,” Bergdoll says. “But with schools cutting back, the children possibly benefit the most.”

 The theater's holiday show, of course, benefits the child in all of us.

“People really do have a passion for great holiday music,” Bergdoll says. “‘A Musical Christmas Card' reminds them of their childhood and times gone by. It brings back old family memories, and creates new ones.”

See the show

York Little Theatre's annual Christmas variety show, “A Musical Christmas Card,” takes the stage at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and at 3 p.m. Sunday at the theater, 27 S. Belmont St., Spring Garden Township.

Tickets are $10 for children, $18 for students, $21 for seniors and $23 for adults.

For more information, visit www.ylt.org or call 854-5715 between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays.

— Reach Kyle Dunlap at news@yorkdispatch.com.