Cater Sindelar (Ralphie) and Madeleine Maby (Mother) act out the famous bar of soap scene in the Playhouse Square production of "A Christmas Story."


December 7, 2015

CSU benefit brings iconic story to Playhouse Stage

“A Christmas Story” has just opened at the Allen Theatre in Playhouse Square for the holiday season. The Nov. 29th show was a special benefit for Cleveland State University, with all proceeds going towards funding scholarships for the Department of Theatre and Dance.

“A Christmas Story” is about a boy named Ralphie (Carter Sindelar) and his ultimate goal of getting a Red Ryder Carbine action 200-shot air rifle for Christmas. Ralphie lives in Indiana with his parents (Madeleine Maby and Christopher Gerson), as well as his younger brother Randy (Miles Pierce).

No matter what Ralphie tries, whether it is writing a school paper on the Red Ryder rifle for his teacher Miss Shields (Laura Perrotta), creating homemade sales ads and sticking them in his parent’s mailbox, or even asking Santa himself, it seems as if his wish of getting the Red Ryder rifle for Christmas will go unfulfilled.

Everyone from his mother to Miss Shields, his classmates Esther Jane (Maela Mazzone) and Helen (Sun-Hee Smith), had the same warning for him: “You’ll shoot your eye out!”

Ralphie and his friends Flick (Willie Rose) and Schwartz (Howard Nock) also have to deal with the school’s bully, Scut Farkas (Henry Harte).

“A Christmas Story” has a special connection to Cleveland as parts of the movie were filmed here.

The house still stands at 3159 W. 11th Street and has been turned into a museum about the movie. Scenes were also filmed in the old Higbee department store, where the Horseshoe Casino is now.

The play is directed by the veteran director John McCluggage, who is returning to the Cleveland Play house after working at theaters in New York and California.

Special attention should go to the performance of Ralph (Jeff Talbott). Ralph is the adult version of Ralphie, acting as the narrator throughout the play.

In the film, Ralph is only heard, not seen, but Ralph is on stage for almost the entire duration of the play, and does an amazing job mimicking the emotions and expressions of young Ralphie.

The set has many beautiful pieces, including Higbee’s department store and the outside and inside of Ralphie’s home.

The home has Christmas lights decorating it, as well as the famous leg lamp sitting in the windowsill for all passersby to see.

“A Christmas Story” is playing in the Allen Theatre from Nov. 27 to Dec. 23 and is a play with great acting and scenery, that all ages can enjoy.


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