'A Christmas Story': Denver, meet your Ralphie Parker

Clockwise from upper left: Joshua Turchin, Dylan Boyd, Christopher Swan and Susannah Jones. Photo courtesy of 'A Christmas Story, The Musical.' Clockwise from upper left: Joshua Turchin, Dylan Boyd, Christopher Swan and Susannah Jones. Photo courtesy of ‘A Christmas Story, The Musical.’

A Christmas Story, The Musical chronicles young and bespectacled Ralphie Parker as he schemes his way toward the holiday gift of his dreams, an official Red Ryder® Carbine–Action 200-Shot Range Model Air Rifle. Dylan Boyd, who plays Ralphie Parker on the 2015 National Tour that visits Denver from Dec. 16-27, talks about his experience with the show.

Q: Ralphie Parker is a truly iconic character. What is it like taking on this role?
Dylan Boyd: It is the most amazing feeling. I also feel responsible to play the role well so that the audiences get to the heart of Ralphie and learn what makes the character tick.

Dylan Boyd quote, A Christmas Story. Q: Since the character you play is so well-known, are you able to also make it your own?
Dylan Boyd: I hope so. I actually have not watched the original movie or watched videos of former Ralphies because I want my choices to be something that came to me personally in rehearsal and from reading the script.

Q: Many people are familiar with the 1983 movie. How do you think the show translates as a Broadway musical?
Dylan Boyd: OMG! The musical has the whole story with the same characters with musical numbers that will blow the audience away. There isn’t a split second that there isn’t something exciting going on. You will laugh hysterically and you may just cry too. It is heartwarming. And there are live dogs in the show.

Q: What’s your personal favorite moment in the show?
Dylan Boyd: Without a doubt, my favorite is performing “Ralphie to the Rescue.” The song is a daydream come to life where I’m in my class daydreaming about getting the infamous BB gun and all the amazing things I’ll do when, and if, my dream comes true. There are lots of people on stage singing and dancing…so much fun.

Two young local actors join A Christmas Story tour in Denver

Q: The movie is the epitome of a classic that is beloved by so many people around the world, from ages 6 to 106. What do you think it is about the show that transcends generations and makes it relevant to so many different people?
Dylan Boyd:
Everyone has had the feeling of wanting something so, so much and feeling like your whole life will change if you get it. Then you find out what is really important in your life, things like family. I also find people relate to the bullying theme in this show — bullies have always been around, so people relate to the underdog coming out on top storyline.

Q: For a young kid, this has to be a pretty amazing opportunity. What is it like living on the road and traveling with a Broadway show?
A: Well, it is definitely a dream come true. Some people don’t realize that all of the kids in the show still have to go to school every day. That, on top of rehearsals, makes for a pretty busy schedule. But this has been the most amazing opportunity to see new places I have never been and meet new, interesting people along the way.

Q: Did you do anything in particular to prepare for this role?
Dylan Boyd: Absolutely. I took a weekly voice lesson and took a lot of dance lessons. And I admit, for inspiration I look at my Red Ryder Carbine Action BB Gun. … Oh yes, I have one that I got last Christmas. So far it’s only been for show. I haven’t even had the chance to use it, but it does help me get into character.

Q: What advice do you have for young people like you who dream to be on the Broadway stage?
Dylan Boyd: Keep working at it. Don’t give up just because you try out and don’t get chosen. I have gone to audition after audition for so many shows. While I have been lucky enough to be chosen for a few, there were many I didn’t get. I actually auditioned for this show when I was 8 and only made it to one callback. Now I just turned 11 and I got the dream part of Ralphie.

Note: This interview was provided by the ‘A Christmas Story, The Musical’ national press office.

A Christmas Story, The Musical: Ticket information

  • Performances Dec. 16-27
  • Buell Theatre
  • ASL interpreted, Audio described, Open Captioned performance: 2 p.m. Dec. 27
  • 303-893-4100 or BUY ONLINE
  • TTY: 303-893-9582
  • Groups of 15 or more: 303-446-4829
  • Also: Purchase in person at The Denver Center Ticket Office, located at the Helen Bonfils Theatre Complex lobby. Buy and print online at DenverCenter.org.
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