This season at The Orpheum, A Christmas Story has been showing. I watched it on the fifthteenth with my little one and as usual it ended happily and with a lesson taught from journeys and memories as the director Ryker Harris wrote in his little note. He just did the performance for the ‘. . . warm fuzzies. . “ so take it how you want it.
The skill, adaptation, and general impression of the actor’s performances in the roles of their characters make me question on how I am still accepted in the theater department of Canyon Ridge High School. Take Levi Ladwig, the boy who played Ralphie in A Christmas Story, he is merely in the fifth grade and played his character with ease, but it seemed as if his performance was lacking energy. Though he did more than I can ever do, Hudson Woods played Ralphie’s little brother, Randy, and did a great job of doing so and is only in the second grade. One of my favorite lines that he had said was “Pappa is going to kill Ralphie” while he hid under the table crying after they came home from school and Ralphie fought Scut Farkus, acted by Brayden White. Brayden, in my opinion, could have done so much better at being the bully. His words seemed choppy when he was presenting them. Ryker, the director just in case you forgot, allowed us, the audience, to go back and relive those moments with Ralphie, to have “. . .warm fuzzies. . .” like Ralphie did when stroking the leg of the lamp.
Ah, the lamp, probably one of the best props I’ve lived to see, and I haven’t lived that long. After the father or better known as Old Man, acted by Landon Ladwig, won the lamp they broke down in song and the lamp multiplied into like ten different smaller ones.I give kudos to Larry Johnson as the prop handler as I would of had no patients for the tiny versions of the original sized one. What I loved most about the lamp design is that it reminded me of a western hooker and the wife, (Brooke Woods), of Old Man, mother of Ralphie and Randy, dressed as though the leg of the lamp belonged to her. I honestly thought that was pure genius. Following along with the costumes Uriah did well fitting into the era, but what I wished I saw more of was everyone’s character personalities. The lighting fit well throughout most scenes as well as it contrasted the costumes. Though when switching to an inside scene I wished it was a bit more of a warm yellow as most houses during winter seem to uphold that glow, and when they were outside it felt as if it wasn’t winter as they used a color I can’t really pinpoint. When we entered ideas in Ralphie’s head it was a violet pink and Faith Slaughter, the one in charge of lights, quickly switched colors irritating my eyes and soon did a dj like move were lights quickly flashed bright white, when she should of did a soft romantic color for Ralphie’s image. The Set itself was breathtaking as it held the realistic feel of a home, and had ‘snow’ on the ceiling. Uriah was also responsible for the set.
When I mentioned Randy saying my favorite line, I could never connect to something so strongly as that one phrase. I can understand the feeling of fear of losing a sibling who you are close too. I just recently lost my sister in a way I wish I didn’t have to go through. Randy and Ralphie just witnessed their parents fighting for the first time in that way and they are left home for a moment and want to fix what caused the parents the stress for them to fight. My sister and I would do the same as we thought we were the cause of their fights and we would want to fix the little things so they could just love each other more. I just wished the director would of dragged on the fight because I know fights don’t end that quickly. Too continue on Ralphie is fighting for a wish he wants, but it felt like the more he shot for his dreams the more likely that people would laugh at him and never encourage it and it beats him down a bit. When someone would ask what would he wish for Christmas the more quiet he becomes about his wish. In a scene the teacher Mrs. Schwartz, acted by Breena Wright, mocks and laughs at his wishes bringing him down even further. I feel the weight of the idea of the teachers bringing you down and quickly discouraging you, before they actually understand you’re reasoning.
To make this short, this play was so much better than last year’s Christmas play, like it was so bad I forgot it’s name. As always, seeing the stage lights go up as the music starts to play is more magical than clicking play on your Netflix account so if you have time in the next few days A Christmas Story will be playing at 7 p.m. Dec. 20, 7 p.m. Dec. 21, and 2 p.m. Dec. 22 and tickets range in price from ten to sixty dollars. Take your family, friends, or a date because downtown Twin Falls is always pretty during Christmas time and this is a play that will make you feel warm and fuzzy inside if that’s what you’d like.