‘A Christmas Story’ at Festival Theater runs through Dec. 29

Festival Theatre’s 2013 holiday production of “A Christmas Story” runs through Dec. 29.  The stage version of the classic American film “A Christmas Story” runs for four weeks, giving patrons numerous opportunities to see this humorous and beloved story.

“A Christmas Story” is a delightful trip into the past, children’s imagination, and our idealized recollection of days long passed in a heart warming story of family togetherness at Christmas,” Moersfelder says.

From the page to film to the stage, humorist Jean Shepherd’s memoir has been a holiday classic in many forms, centering on Ralphie Parker’s ninth Christmas and his unending quest to acquire a genuine Red Ryder BB gun.  Desperate for any adult to agree, young Ralphie pleads his case before his mother, his teacher, and even the Santa Claus himself.  The consistent and responsible reply: “You’ll shoot your eye out.”

All of the elements from the beloved motion picture are in this production including the rich original narration from Shepherd’s writing, the temperamental exploding furnace, the winter experiment with wet tongue and a cold lamppost, and that classic leg lamp.

Playing the adult Ralph Parker is Seth Kaltwasser, a member of Festival’s professional acting troupe since 2010 and on staff since 2011.  The three other adult roles in the cast feature Jaclyn Johnson as Mother, Darrell Johnston as the Old Man and Kimberly Braun in the role of Miss Shields. Playing the young Ralphie are Josh Stirrat and Aiden Ruona. The seven children’s roles are all double cast to cover the large number of performances, with both public showings and school matinees on the schedule through December 29th.

With Stirrat of Luck, Wisconsin, the Green Cast has Sienna Shoop, Lucy Herman, and Willem Hoefler of St. Croix Falls, Andrew Lewis and Chris Lewis of Grantsburg, and Ella Middleton of Dresser. The Red Cast has Aiden Ruona, Abby Ruona, and Sidrah Edwards of St. Croix Falls, plus Catelyn Rice and Stephen Rice of Milltown, Addie Koenig of Luck, and Liam Gallagher of Dresser.

Festival Theatre’s production is directed by Ed Moersfelder, a familiar face on stage for the past six years. Ed, a member of the acting troupe for the 2013 season, directed the 2012 production of “It’s a Wonderful Life,” and has appeared in “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,” “A Christmas Carol,” “Inspecting Carol,” and “Is He Dead,” just to name a few.

Along with Moersfelder, the production team for this show is comprised of Jaclyn Johnson (Production Coordinator and Scenic Painting), Kimberly Murphy (Set Dressing), Gina Bonin (Costume Design), Danette Olsen (Original Scenic Design), Courtney Schmitz Watson (Lighting Design and Scenic Design Facilitator), Fizz Kizer (Set Construction) and Laura Seed (Properties Design). Peter Weber is the Stage Manager, Miles Ruona works as Assistant Stage Manager, and Sam Hoefler and Olivia Peer are Production Assistants.

“A Christmas Story” is sponsored by Amery Regional Medical Center and Thrivent Financial. This play is Flex Pass eligible for those who are (or become) subscribers to Festival Theatre, otherwise tickets for the play are $26 for adults and $13.50 for youth.  Tickets can be reserved by calling the box office at 715-483-3387, by emailing boxoffice@festivaltheatre.org, or online at www.festivaltheatre.org. Festival Theatre is located in downtown St. Croix Falls, Wisconsin at 210 North Washington Street.

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