PHOTO CALL: A Christmas Story, The Musical Opens On Broadway; Red Carpet Arrivals, Curtain Call and Cast Party

By Matthew Blank
20 Nov 2012

The 1983 film A Christmas Story, based on Jean Shepherd's nostalgic and comedic holiday tale of American Christmases past, is re-wrapped as a new Broadway musical by songwriters Benj Pasek and Justin Paul that officially opened Nov. 19 at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre.



Tony-winning director John Rando (Urinetown) and Tony-nominated choreographer Warren Carlyle (Chaplin, Follies, An Evening With Hugh Jackman) helm the production that played a five-city U.S. tour last holiday season and was warmly embraced by critics nationwide.

A Christmas Story has a score by Richard Rodgers Award-winning Dogfight songwriters Pasek and Paul and a book by Joseph Robinette. The new musical that captures the dysfunction and joy of a 1940's American holiday began previews Nov. 7 and will play a limited run through Dec. 30.



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John Bolton and Erin Dilly
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN



The score includes such songs as "Red Ryder," "Ralphie to the Rescue," "A Major Award" and "You'll Shoot Your Eye Out." An 18-track cast album is currently available from Masterworks Broadway.

Young actor Johnny Rabe makes his Broadway debut in the central role of Ralphie, the youngster who pines away for an "Official Red Ryder Carbine-Action Two-Hundred-Shot Range Model Air Rifle!" Peter Billingsley, who originated the role in the 1983 film, is among the producers of the musical. At certain performances, Joe West plays the role of Ralphie.

The cast also features Dan Lauria (Lombardi, "The Wonder Years") as Jean Shepherd, with John Bolton (Spamalot, Contact, Titanic) as The Old Man, Tony Award nominee Erin Dilly (Nice Work if You Can Get It, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang) as Mother, Zac Ballard as little brother Randy, Caroline O'Connor (Chicago, "Moulin Rouge") as school teacher Miss Shields and Eddie Korbich (The Little Mermaid, The Drowsy Chaperone, Wicked) as Santa Claus.

The ensemble features Tia Altinay, John Babbo, Charissa Bertels, Grace Capeless, Zoe Considine, Andrew Cristi, Mathew deGuzman, Thay Floyd, George Franklin, Nick Gaswirth, Mark Ledbetter, Jose Luaces, Jack Mastrianni, Mara Newbery, Lindsay O'Neil, Sarah Min-Kyung Park, J.D. Rodriguez, Analise Scarpaci, Lara Seibert, Jeremy Shinder, Luke Spring, Beatrice Tulchin and Kirsten Wyatt.

Two bloodhounds named Pete and Lily are set to wreak havoc and snag a turkey as the "Bumpus Hounds," the pooches who take part in the infamous scene in the Christmas-set classic, where a holiday dinner is interrupted when they run off with the family's turkey dinner.

According to producers, "In 1940's Indiana, a bespectacled boy named Ralphie has a big imagination and one wish for Christmas—a Red Ryder BB Gun. A kooky leg lamp, outrageous pink bunny pajamas, a cranky department store Santa, and a triple-dog-dare to lick a freezing flagpole are just a few of the obstacles that stand between Ralphie and his Christmas dream. A Christmas Story, The Musical is holiday entertainment that captures a simpler time in America with delicious wit and a heart of gold."

The production has scenic design by Walt Spangler; costume design by Elizabeth Hope Clancy; lighting design by Tony Award winner Howell Binkley; sound design by Ken Travis; wig design by Tom Watson; orchestrations by 2011 Tony nominee Larry Blank; musical supervision by Ian Eisendrath; dance arrangements by Glen Kelly; and vocal arrangements by composer Justin Paul.

The Broadway production is produced by Gerald Goehring, Roy Miller, Michael F. Mitri, Pat Flicker Addiss, Peter Billingsley, Timothy Laczynski, Mariano Tolentino, Louise H. Beard, Michael Filerman, Scott Hart, Alison Eckert, Bob Bartner, Michael Jenkins, Angela Milonas and Bradford W. Smith.

Visit AChristmasStorytheMusical.com.