Yorkshire Playhouse 2017 Season: The Importance of Being Earnest

Yorkshire Playhouse 2017 Season: The Importance of Being Earnest

The weather outside might be frightful now, but summer will be here before you know it. And what would summer be without a little romantic comedy? In 2017, the Yorkshire Playhouse is bringing you the classic romantic comedy that started the genre and still holds its own today! Intrigued? Read Mitch's blog post and join us for the Yorkshire Playhouse's production of The Importance of Being Earnest.

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Yorkshire Playhouse 2017 Season: The Madwoman of Chaillot

Yorkshire Playhouse 2017 Season:  The Madwoman of Chaillot

The Yorkshire Playhouse is excited about our 2017 Season, and we think you will be, too! This year we've put together a series of blog posts to introduce each of the magnificent shows in our season. We hope, as you read a little about each show, you'll begin to be as excited as we are!

Don't forget Memberships for the 2017 Season are available!

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Matt Spencer's Directorial Debut at the Yorkshire Playhouse

It started in high school when “A Christmas Story” Director Matt Spencer and his wife, Holly, met and shared a love for the theater and each other. They will be married 20 years next May. About this time three years ago, Matt’s job as an Environmental Engineer moved their family of seven to York. Both Matt and Holly got involved with Yorkshire Playhouse when Holly was cast in “Nunsense II.” It rekindled their love of working with theater productions, helping out in the community, and they made lots of new friends in a new town. 

“God Spell” back in high school was Matt’s first time at directing. Since coming to York he played a duel role in “Leaving Iowa” as Joe Hosfinger, the crazy farmer, and a motel clerk. He assistant directed and played a soldier in the production of “The Mouse That Roared.” 

Earlier this year, Matt submitted Philip Grecian’s “A Christmas Story” as the holiday play. The movie came out in 1983 when Matt was seven or eight years old. He says he remembers the feeling of wanting a certain gift so badly, as Ralphie does in the movie. Rather than a gun, Matt was wishing for GI Joe action figures like his older brother had.  Matt feels like most people have seen the movie and relate to the classic story. “Everyone loves this movie.” He watched the movie with his cast, he wanted them to get a feel for their character but not imitate the characters.  Matt feels his cast members will bring their own talent and expression to the role they play. 

When selecting his cast, of course Ralphie was critical. Matt found Ralphie in nine-year old Brody Booth, who not only looked a little like Ralphie, he brought the enthusiasm and talent the director was looking for. Brody has done some summer children’s theater, as well as being cast in last year’s “Miracle on 34th Street.” 

The adult Ralphie, played by Jameson Trauger, narrates the play and explains a lot of young Ralphie’s feelings and emotions to the audience. Matt says he loves working with both children and adults. He explained that “with an adult, if they need to be sad, you just say, act sad. With children you often have to take them to a memory or scenario that will bring them the feeling." Matt says rehearsals have been great--lots of laughter and fun every time. 

Matt explained that the play and the movie have the same classic scenes and flow. However, in the play, Ralphie has a love interest that eventually leads him to feel girls aren’t so bad. 

“I am excited for everyone to see the show, everyone will leave with a smile on their face, it’s been great.” We are excited for Matt, as he makes his debut as a director of “A Christmas Story” at the Yorkshire Playhouse.

Written by: Mary Alley

In the picture on the left is Matt Spencer and son Jett Spencer in "The Mouse that Roared" and to the right Jameson Trauger and Brody Booth (grown and young Ralphie).

Support Community Theater and Enjoy Five Live Performances Throughout the Year!

When you become a member of the Yorkshire Playhouse you save on regular season shows and choose your seats BEFORE the general public! Season memberships are an awesome value and your ticket admissions are flexible and can be used in any combination throughout the season.

Our members also save on any additional tickets purchased all year. Family or friends visiting in town during a show night? No problem! Additional tickets for ANY show are only $12.50 each, a locked-in savings of $2.50 on EVERY additional seat you purchase when you have a season membership.

Want to save EVEN more money? Purchase your Yorkshire Playhouse membership before December 31, 2016, and your final ticket cost is only $10 each!

Memberships make wonderful gifts, that continue giving all year long! A gift of live theater can’t be beat! Give your friends and family a night out five times in a year with a gift membership in their name.

Our Yorkshire Playhouse is 100% staffed and run by volunteers. Seasonal Memberships and Box Office tickets sales only partially support the Yorkshire Playhouse. Please consider giving an additional tax deductible donation to our Theater. Playhouse supporters receive special recognition in our programs each season.

Corporate sponsorships are also available for the 2017 season. Your business will receive 20 Playhouse tickets, and an ongoing ad in all our programs. For more information about corporate giving, please contact us at yorktheater@gmail.com for details.

We are a volunteer organization. Volunteers are the heart of the Yorkshire Playhouse, and we welcome the creative energy that makes our theater thrive. Join us and become a volunteer! Box office workers, ushers, performers, costumers, carpenters, painters and stage crews are all critical volunteer activities. Sign up to volunteer at www.yorkshireplayhouse.com/volunteer. 

Letter from the President

President: C. Danielle Deal

President: C. Danielle Deal

Dear Yorkshire Playhouse Members:

The year is coming to a close, and so is another season at the Yorkshire Playhouse. In 2016, our community of actors, directors, and volunteers strove to bring to life five stories on our stage. And what a season it’s been! It started with a comedy about a little nation with a big problem and is about to end with a story of a little boy with a big dream. (Don’t miss the last show of the 2016 season, A Christmas Story performing December 6-11!) As this season comes to an end, we are preparing to begin another.

The Yorkshire Playhouse is proud to announce our 2017 season. This year we will continue to bring to life stories that we believe will touch your heart and tickle your funny bone. Once again we are producing five shows, including our ever popular Christmas show in the season. We are excited to get started, and we hope you’ll join us on our journey.

We’ll begin the season with a classic, The Madwoman of Chaillot. Tired of all the political rhetoric after this election? Come watch a rather strange woman and her crazy bunch of friends put on trial the devious, greedy businessmen and politicians, making the world a better place with a little love and kindness—and a whole heaping scoop of madness.

Next, meet Marty, a woman who just wants to bring a little art to her community in the form of an Acting Class. Meet her husband, a recent divorced carpenter, a former actress, and the awkward high school student who join the class expecting to have a little fun and learn about acting. Watch as the silly games they play reveal truths about themselves and their relationships with each other. You won’t want to miss the award winning show with a funny name—Circle, Mirror, Transformation.

It’s one of the most famous comedies of all time for a reason. This summer Yorkshire Playhouse will be performing The Importance of Being Earnest! Never has mistaken identity been more humorous (or intentional) as two men battle for love and a name, than in this comedy of errors. Ah, the wit—the eloquence—the charm—the confusion? And which one is Earnest? 

She’s a very good cleaning lady; she’s an even better detective. If only the dead body would stay where she left it, she might actually be able to convince the police. Will The Busybody stumble onto the evidence and solve the case before the killer gets away? Join us next fall to find out.

Who hasn’t curled up on a cold winter night with a story about Laura Ingalls Wilder? The Yorkshire Playhouse is proud to bring you a story of a Christmas with the Ingalls family that you may never have heard before. Join Laura as she learns the importance of family and how love endures even when life is difficult. Curl up with us at Christmas time and enjoy A Laura Ingalls Wilder Christmas!

We are thrilled about our new season, and we believe you will be too! Join us in 2017, as we strive to create art through live theatre! Purchase a membership to the Yorkshire Playhouse! Also, please, considering donating to the Yorkshire Playhouse. Donations help us keep the lights on, and without lights, it’s not much of a show!

Thank you!


C. Danielle Deal


Yorkshire Playhouse Board of Directors

2017 Season

Madwoman of Chaillot - Directed by: Karla Ott

The wealthy, elite businessmen of Paris have a plan to extract the oil which they believe lies beneath the streets of Paris regardless of the consequences to the poor who live there.  Countess Aurelia plans to stand in their way. It’s a fable, mixed up with a farce, with a healthy helping of reason, and more than its fair share of madness. Watch a Madwoman and her crazy cast of friends do what we all wish we could in one of the most humorous and relevant plays ever written.  Guaranteed to make you laugh till you cry. You won’t want to miss the Madwoman of Challiot!

Circle Mirror Transformation - Directed by: Mitchell Roush

Don’t let the name confuse you. Named for an Acting game, the play is the story of four people who enroll in a six week acting class and are transformed by the interactions that occur there.  Marty, the instructor, together with her husband James, a recently divorced Schultz, a former actress Teresa, and a quiet high school student named Lauren, act their way to an intimate understanding of themselves. Part drama, part comedy—this play is about the beautifully imperfect lives of its five characters. Come fall in love with these authentic characters as you watch their lives come full circle, mirrored in the acting games in which they participate.  

The Importance of Being Earnest - Directed by: C. Danielle Deal

It may be the most famous comedy of all time, which is why it has stood the test of time. The plot centers around a case of mistaken identity, manufactured by two men both claiming to be, you guessed it, Earnest! You’ll laugh along as the men try to keep up the charade, while their opposing interests and love lives threaten to undo the whole thing. Who will end up marrying whom? And who exactly is Earnest? Don’t miss the Yorkshire Playhouse’s new rendition of an old favorite that begs and answers the frivolous question: “What’s in a name?”

Busybody - Directed by: Emily Petersen

She might just be the cleaning lady, but don’t remind her! When a man is murdered in her building, she reports the crime to the police, who arrive just in time to discover the body is missing! When the dead man turns up alive, the police are sure the cleaning woman is more than a little screwy. But not detoured, she’s determined to find the evidence herself. Will the evidence stay put long enough for the police to believe her? You’ll laugh at the crazy antics of this woman and the exasperated police, as she solves the mystery—her own way.

Laura Ingalls Wilder Christmas - Directed by: Judy Andrews

It’s Christmas time! But for the Ingalls family, life looks bleak. When Laura is asked to act as a companion to Mrs Starr, she’s excited to be the midst of finery. However, when she overhears Mrs Starr offer to adopt her, Laura begins to worry that Ma and Pa will actually give her up. Would that be best for the family? Telling the story of one Christmas from the “missing” years, not chronicled in the books. This poignant and moving story of hope, healing, and family is swept along through dialogue, humor, and period songs. Join the Ingalls family in celebrating Christmas at the Yorkshire Playhouse!

Just a note: Information about the new season and how to purchase a membership will be arriving in the mailboxes for members over the next few days.  Also, information about all the shows will be on our website beginning November 28th and that is also when people can begin purchasing Memberships online.  Memberships will also be available at the box office during A Christmas Story.

A Christmas Story - Cast List


Congratulations to all those in the cast, and our thanks to all that auditioned!

Ralphie -- Brodrick Booth
Ralph -- Jameson Trauger
Mother -- Chrystal Houston
Old Man -- Eric Freitas
Miss Shields -- Kathey Stewart
Schwartz -- Andrew Van Gomple
Flick -- Malachi Coppinger
Randy -- Charlie Van Gomple
Farkas -- Zander Madole
Esther Jane -- Lily Houston
Helen -- Lauren Thomas