Austin native bringing Christmas show to AL
Published 10:11 am Friday, December 5, 2014
By Hannah Dillon
ALBERT LEA — Get into the Christmas spirit this weekend with Dylan Kaercher’s “Flyin’ into Christmas.”
“Flyin’ into Christmas” is a 45-part show, including the tech crew, that is written, directed, designed and choreographed by local talent Dylan Kaercher.
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Kaercher, an Austin native, has been putting on a Christmas show for the past five years, and it began when he was a junior in high school.
Kaercher and some friends put together a show and the show acted as a fundraiser for the American Red Cross. From there it grew into an annual event each year a new show is performed as well as a new nonprofit organization is chosen for the fundraiser.
This year’s nonprofit is the Albert Lea Art Center. It takes place 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday at Albert Lea High School.
During his time acting in “Annie” over the summer, Kaercher began talking about his Christmas show and wanted to hold it in Albert Lea. From there, he got involved with the art center and the two combined.
The idea for “Flyin’ into Christmas” has somewhat been on Kaercher’s mind since he was a child. When he was young, Kaercher said he thought being a flight attendant would be fun, especially traveling around the holidays.
It’s a show he’s wanted to do for a few years, but he wasn’t sure if he could get a whole airport on stage. However, “Flyin’ into Christmas” utilizes every part of the theater, including the aisles between the seats, effectively turning the whole theater into an airplane.
The show has been in the works for over a year. Around the time of Kaercher’s 2013 Christmas show, he decided it was time to make a show about an airport.
“I got together with my group of friends and said, ‘All right. Let’s put an airport on stage,’” Kaercher said.
The premise of the play is Kaercher’s character is trying to get back to Minnesota to do his Christmas show and during his time at the airport he meets many interesting characters. However, a snowstorm hits and everyone is stuck at the airport.
The second part of the show has the characters trying to figure out how to get home before putting on a Christmas variety show at the airport to keep everyone entertained.
The show features not only Kaercher but local talent such as Rika Boorsma, Carrie Boyer Olvera, Charley Fleek and Octavia Staat, among others.
In the past, Kaercher said he’s gotten really good response from his shows. When he fundraised for the Red Cross a second time, the show sold out the approximately 600-seat Paramont Theater in Austin, and there was a waiting list to get in the door.
Kaercher said he sees people coming back year after year as well as new faces. Some people come to watch the show and get involved in the show the next year.
While the show has 45 people in the cast and tech crew, it’s not Kaercher’s biggest production. “Swingin’ into Christmas” for the Red Cross was his biggest cast at a whopping 152.