A Christmas Story first came to life in 1983 and has been a movie that families have gathered together to watch over the years, and this year Rosebud Theatre is bringing this story to life on the stage.
Rosebud Theatre's production of A Christmas Story will transport the audience back to a simpler time. The show is filled with many moments of laughter and silent reflection, seeing this production has reminded me to take a moment to pause during this time of year to reflect on the past and be completely present in each moment.
Aaron Krogman and Rebbekah Ogden are two of the stars in this year's production. Krogman plays Ralphie Parker the main character as an adult and gets to share this story by speaking directly to the audience throughout the play. While Ogden plays a nine-year-old Ralphie during one of the most important Christmases he ever had. As we see his story unfold on stage the combination of Krogman's narration and of Ogden's portrayal of young Ralphie works beautifully together and allows the audience to feel completely immersed in the story.
Performing on the Rosebud stage many times in the past, this play offers Krogman a much different take on a role, "I love the ability to get to engage with the audience directly, I really love the Rosebud Theatre audience they've sort of trained me in many ways, and it's such a unique thing to get to speak directly to them for this prolonged way it is sort of a commentary. I feel so connected to them in a way I haven't before on the opera house stage."
Krogman came to train in Rosebud 15 years ago and was pulled in by the uniqueness of the school, the people of the town, the faith-based environment, and his love for storytelling. Seeing the dedication to the telling of stories and a group with a love for the arts and the focus on bringing high-quality theatre to the audience has kept Krogman coming back to perform on the Rosebud stage.
After being a part of the community for 15 years Krogman has a deep appreciation for the visitors who venture out to support theatre in the Hamlet of Rosebud and feels privileged to share his art, "Personally I feel real sense of investment in what happens in Rosebud in terms of education and hospitality and the unique thing that Rosebud is offering. I feel like the audience that comes is in on it and they have a personal stake in the magic that happens in Rosebud."
Ogden was drawn to Rosebud to study, being from a small town she found a connection to a community with a strong dedication to the arts.
When preparing for a role like this, Ogden delves into all aspects of the character, what he is feeling and wanting and what drives the character,"I try to look at what the philosophy is of a nine-year-old little boy and to think why is it that he feels he needs that gun. I don't try to come at the role-playing a child, or acting like a child necessarily instead I try to figure out what is the world view of that child and the energy that carries that child."
Both Ogden and Krogman found reflection on their own childhoods, Ogden connected with Ralphie and how he felt during the play about wanting something so badly that everything else doesn't seem important, and seeing how now looking back that can be silly to your adult self but as a child that was your world.
Krogman enjoys the chance to reflect on the life of Ralphie nightly. Thinking back to his own childhood brought up one of his favourite Christmas memories. The year Krogman got a G.I. Joe tiger stripped warplane from his mum, it was the greatest gift he had ever received the one thing he wanted. Looking at it now for Krogman it was the plane that brought him joy, but for his mum it was his reaction, she has shared with him that was the best part of that moment for her.
Director Paul Muir and this full cast of characters will take you on a Christmas adventure of love, family, mishaps, and mayhem as Ralphie tries to work his Christmas magic and get the one thing he wants this year, a Red Ryder carbine-action 200-shot range model air rifle with a compass and a watch on the handle. Seeing the story through the eyes of a grown-up Ralphie will remind the audience that it wasn't just about the toy, but it was about the moments of a family.
A Christmas Story will run until December 22, for tickets visit www.rosebudtheatre.com.