If you don’t have tickets to see “A Christmas Story, the Musical,” contact the Wagon Wheel and make arrangements to see it Dec. 12-14 or 19-21. You will be glad you did.
The musical is set in northern Indiana in 1940, with the Parker family taking the spotlight.
The four Parkers all turn in outstanding performances. Parker Irwin is Ralphie, a youngster who wants a Red Ryder Carbine-Action BB gun for Christmas. Alek Fehmann is Randy, the younger brother. Kira Lace Hawkins is the mother: no BB gun for her son, he’ll shoot his eye out; and Matthew Janisse is the Old Man, a typical dad who is trying to win a prize in a crossword contest. When he wins his “major prize” it turns out to be a lamp on a leg. He loves it. Mother hates it.
Kenneth D’Ellia is Jean Shepherd, who does a super job of serving as narrator of the production, weaving his way in and out of Ralphie’s life.
As noted above, Ralphie is obsessed with the idea of getting a Red Ryder BB gun for Christmas. He’ll do anything to get one, even if Mother constantly says “no!”
When the family visits Higbee’s, the town’s department store, the BB gun is one of the items on display in the window.
“Before The Old Man Comes Home” is an entertaining number that three of the Parkers sing before the Old Man returns and finds the lamp he loves has been broken. The audience is in stitches as he tries his best to put it back together, all to no avail.
Scott Michaels does another excellent job as director and choreographer. The dances are all fun and entertaining. Many of the songs were written to go along with Ralphie’s Christmas wish. Such songs as “The Red Ryder Carbine-Action BB Gun,” “Ralphie to the Rescue,” “Sticky Situation,” “Up on Santa’s Lap” and “Somewhere Hovering Over Indiana” and the scenes that go with them will have the audience in stitches, providing for a great evening of entertainment.
Does Ralphie’s Christmas wish come true? I’ll not tell. Of course, those who have seen the movie know the answer. Others will have to see the musical to find out.
Hats off to the entire cast and those behind the scenes for jobs well done. Caleb Mouat is Schwartz, Collen Hoskins is Flick, Faith Delp is Esther Jane, Sadie Lemon is Mary Beth, Nicholas Lowman is Scut Farkus, Jackson Moeller is Grover Dill, Elizabeth Stone is Grace Capeless and Nancy, Brielle Fehlmann is Sarah Min-Kyung Park, Ellen Jenders is Miss Shields and is in the ensemble, Josh Levinon is a bank robber and is in the ensemble, Ian Subsara is a bank robber and is in the ensemble, Michaels is the fantasy villain and is in the ensemble, Michael Yocum is Santa and is in the ensemble, Mary-Elizabeth Milton is Mrs. Schwartz and is in the ensemble, Jennifer Dow is Flick’s mother and is in the ensemble. Other members of the ensemble are Shay Dixon, Erica Wilpon and Saitlin Mesiano. In the children’s ensemble are Isabelle Awald, Mason Kroll and Ellie Irwin.
For additional information or tickets call (574) 267-8041, or visit wagonwheeltheatre.org.