VPP prepares to launch Christmas season
Brian Belleth will be among a bevy of singers performing Nov. 28 at the Starbright Christmas presentation at Victoria Playhouse. Handout/Postmedia Network
The Victoria Playhouse is bringing back their annual holiday tradition on Nov. 28 – Starbright Christmas returns for its fifth year with special guests Lambton Youth Choir, Sacred Heart choir and St. Philip Choir.
Artistic Director David Rogers said for many people, the show signals the official beginning of the Christmas season.
The show will see familiar faces returning to the stage, including Brian Belleth, Amber Tomlin, Jesse Grandmont, Jennifer Walls and Callandra Dendias. Rogers said they will also have a large number of local youth on stage singing with choirs.
Every year is always a little bit different, Rogers said.
Belleth said the show is so well-loved because of its nostalgia; the songs often bring back memories and hearing some of those powerful songs, like O Holy Night, can remind people that the real meaning of Christmas goes beyond gifts.
“For me, just hearing some of the songs bring a lot of great memories of family traditions,” Belleth said. “I think that’s really powerful and spiritual for people…this is the beginning of their Christmas experience, and it’s so important that it’s become a tradition.”
Tomlin said so far in coming together in rehearsal, it’s been fast paced and a lot of fun. This is Tomlin’s first time performing in Starbright Christmas, and so far, it’s been a blast for the Windsor based actress.
“It’s so nice because the voices are different, which I just love,” she said. “Especially when you get all of those different styles coming together, it’s just so beautiful… I feel like this show is going to have an impact and there’s going to be a feeling of Christmas behind it.”
Rogers said while they have plenty of Christmas songs on the docket, they also do inspirational songs.
“We open the show with a medley of Christmas carols… the traditional songs,” he said. “But we have a lot more to say.”
He said they also delve into songs that people may know, but rarely hear on the radio or elsewhere. Rogers said that’s what makes the show so special.
“You don’t hear them anymore because they are traditional songs, and unfortunately the radio doesn’t play them a lot,” he said.
Rogers said they hope the show reminds people the original meaning of these songs, because oftentimes that’s been forgotten.
“We forget where they’re based… we try to remind the audience of the words.”
Rogers said the show is really about the pageantry of Christmas; they focus on the beauty and look of the show, and this includes numerous costume changes and marvelous gowns. Rogers said there are over 24 gowns in the show worn by thee women.
“We also do a bit of comedy and there’s a bit of light stuff, but people really enjoy the beauty of the music, the pageantry and the look of the show,” he said. “They’re always delighted in coming to see it.”
IF YOU GO:
When: Nov. 28 to Dec. 8
Where: Victoria Playhouse Petrolia
Cost: Tickets range from $28 for 18 and under to $42