The Update | YSO to Play Broadway Hits; Fundraiser for Quake Victims at Café 422

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The Youngstown Symphony Orchestra will be back in action Thursday, Feb. 16, with a pops concert featuring tunes from some of Broadway’s biggest musicals.

Andre Raphel will return as guest conductor for the 7:30 p.m. concert. Three Broadway veterans – Scott Coulter, Jessica Hendy and Kelli Rabke – will accompany the orchestra as guest vocalists to sing selections from “Wicked,” “The Phantom of the Opera,” “Annie,” “Jersey Boys,” “The Sound of Music,” “Chicago,” “CATS,” “The Lion King” and “A Chorus Line.”

Tickets range from $55 to $85 and can be purchased in advance at, by phone at 330 259 9651 or at the DeYor box office, downtown.

Raphel is conductor laureate of the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra and served as its music director for 15 years.

His career highlights also include assistant conductor of the New York Philharmonic, the Philadelphia Orchestra and the St. Louis Symphony.

Fundraiser for Turkey Quake Victims

WARREN, Ohio – After last week’s 7.8 magnitude earthquake in Turkey, brothers Serdar and Erdal Dede, co-owners of Café 422, have organized an event to raise funds for their homeland.

It will take place Monday, Feb. 27, at Café 422 in Warren from 5 to 8 p.m. Tickets are $20 apiece and include dinner and the option to participate in a basket auction. All funds raised will go toward earthquake relief efforts.

Tickets can be purchased in advance at the  Café 422 locations in Warren and Boardman, Candywood Wine Cellar in Vienna, The Living Room Tavern in Howland, Station Square in Liberty, Sharon Hot Dog Shoppe in Sharon, Pa., The Kabob House in Boardman or at the door the day of the event.

“While we have made America our home, a part of us will always reside in Turkey, as many of our family and friends live there, including our parents,” Serdar said. “We are fortunate that, based on the location of the earthquake in Turkey, our loved ones were not directly impacted, but the devastation to the country is unimaginable,” Erdal added.

Café 422 will send the funds raised to The Foundation of Anatolian People and Peace Platform. To donate without going to the event, go to

Scrappers Seek Host Families for Players

NILES, Ohio – The Mahoning Valley Scrappers are looking for families interested in hosting a

player during the 2023 season. A host family information session will take place at 6 p.m. Monday, Feb. 27, at Residence Inn by Marriott in Niles. Interested families are asked to RSVP by Feb. 22 at

Host families receive the following benefits:

  • Free season tickets.
  • Season parking pass.
  • Use of a suite for a game.
  • Discounts on concessions and merchandise.
  • On-field recognition at a game.
  • Monthly Eastwood Mall gift card.

To learn more, contact Roxanne Polichetti at 330 505 0000 or email her at

Lit Youngstown Seeks Festival Proposals

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Lit Youngstown seeks proposals for its seventh annual Fall Literary Festival, Oct. 19-21.

The conference will include two days of concurrent sessions by national, regional and local presenters from throughout the United States. Daytime sessions will take place at Youngstown State University, and evening readings and events will be held at venues in downtown Youngstown.

This year’s featured presenters are memoirist Jill Christman of Indiana, novelist and journalist Alison Stine of Colorado and poet and essayist Ross Gay, a Youngstown native currently of Indiana. 

Proposals for creative readings, generative writing workshops and panel discussions on any aspect of writing, reading, publishing, understanding, teaching and translating literature will be considered and must be submitted by Feb. 28. More information on potential topics is available at Lit Youngstown’s website.

New this year will be a dedicated conference track for K-12 language arts educators, including teachers, literacy coaches and school librarians. A special call for proposals invites these educators to submit panels or individual presentations on best practices or roundtable discussions.

Registration to attend the conference will open in April. 

Artist’s Talk at McDonough Museum

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Amanda D. King will give a presentation at the McDonough Museum of Art at 5:10 p.m. Feb. 22 in the gallery where her work is currently being exhibited.

She will be joined by her father, the Rev. Dr. William C. King Jr. of Youngstown, during her talk.

A conceptual artist, cultural strategist and social justice advocate, King uses arts and culture to envision possibilities for transforming individuals, communities and society. King was born in Pittsburgh and lives in Cleveland, where she manages her studio practice and serves as creative director of Shooting Without Bullets.

Auditions for ‘Newsies Jr.’ at Playhouse

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Auditions for the Youngstown Playhouse Youth Theatre’s production of “Newsies Jr.” will take place March 8 and 9 from 5 to 7 p.m.

Based on the real-life Newsboy Strike of the late 1800s, this Disney musical tells the story of Jack Kelly, a rebellious newsboy who dreams of a life as an artist away from the big city. After publishing giant Joseph Pulitzer raises newspaper prices at the newsboys’ expense, Kelly and his fellow newsies take action.

The director is seeking actors 10 to 18 years old. Actors should come prepared with a 16-bar song in the style of the show to sing acapella and to participate in a group dance call.

The creative team is led under the direction of Savannah Teter, stage managed by Caitlyn Santiago and choreographed by Wayne Bonner III. Rehearsals will begin March 20 with a script read-through and will

run Monday to Thursday evenings. 

For information, contact Emelia Sherin at 330 747 5175 or

Holocaust Writing Contest Seeks Entries

YOUNGSTOWN – Students in grades 7 through 12 in Mahoning, Trumbull and Columbiana counties and western Pennsylvania are invited to enter the annual Holocaust Writing, Art and Multimedia contest, a project held in conjunction with Yom Hashoah (Holocaust Memorial Day).

The contest is sponsored by the Jewish Community Relations Council of the Youngstown Area Jewish Federation.

To be commemorated April 18, Yom Hashoah is an internationally recognized day set aside for remembering all victims of the Holocaust and for reminding society of what can happen to people when bigotry, hatred and indifference reign.

The theme for this year’s contest is Stars Without a Heaven – Children in the Holocaust. Guidelines can be found at HERE. The deadline to enter is April 3. Submissions should be emailed to Nancy Sentelik at the Youngstown Area Jewish Federation, For more information, call the Jewish Community Relations Council at 330 746 3250, ext. 108.

Mardi Gras Celebration at Packard Museum

WARREN, Ohio – The W.D. Packard Band and the National Packard Museum will present a Fat Tuesday concert and celebration at the museum on Feb. 21 from 7 to 9 p.m.

Donations will be accepted at the door. For information, call 330 394 1899.

Charlie Chaplin Film at Warner Cascade

NEW CASTLE, Pa. – Historic Warner Cascade Theatre Museum, with the support of the New Castle Public Library, will present a free showing of the classic 1931 Charlie Chaplin film “City Lights” on Valentine’s Day, Feb. 14, at noon. 

The screening will be in the museum’s Cascade Theatre, 11 S. Mill St., with limited seating. 

The award-winning film is considered among Chaplin’s best and includes a film score composed by Chaplin especially for the film. “City Lights” was to be Chaplin’s final silent film.

After the movie, guests can tour the museum.

Pictured at top: Andre Raphel will conduct the Youngstown Symphony Orchestra on Thursday.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.