SPRINGBORO — “A Christmas Story The Musical,” based on the motion picture “A Christmas Story” is playing a La Comedia Dinner Theatre through Dec. 31. The production focuses on the Parker family home in Holman, Ind. in 1940 and the 25 day anticipation of Ralphie’s hopes for a Red Ryder Carbine Action BB Gun.
With a production like this, it is impossible not to compare the stage production to the 1983 classic motion picture. This writer found La Comedia’s presentation, directed by Chris Beiser, more enjoyable than the motion picture. From beginning to end, this musical and set changes progressed without any “hiccups” that can often accompany the early performances.
The musical version makes the parents appear move loving and deeply thoughtful than the movie. The mother, played by Karie Lee Sutherland, did a great job of portraying a deep sensitivity to her children while the father, known as “The Old Man” and his constant grumpiness was well portrayed by Chris Kramer. His cussing was able to be effectively portrayed through a series of family friendly mutterings which was comical. The mother’s disgust of the leg lamp that her husband nearly worships, is magnified as leg lamps appear all over the stage in one scene.
Several of the scenes that effectively captured the anticipation and emotions were the families lined up at Higbee’s Department Store looking in the store window and the school yard and classroom scenes as viewers feel like they have a great view of the action. The scene in the classroom as Ralphie dreams of rescuing others was colorful, making the viewer feel as if they had a good picture of Ralphie’s imaginative thoughts.
The children in the production, with two separate casts, performed their roles well and even close out the production with La Comedia’s traditional singing of “O Holy Night.”
Upcoming shows at La Comedia include “Love, Sex and the IRS” on Jan. 14 to Feb. 28 and Fiddler on the Roof from March 3 to May 1. La Comedia is located at 765 W. Central Ave. in Springboro. For ticket information, call 1-800-677-9505 or visit www.lacomedia.com
Reach Greg Smart at 684-8088.