February 8, 2023 Local Stories in and Around St. Joseph, Illinois

Five questions with Ben Gilly of the ‘The Best Christmas Pageant Ever’

Tonight at 7 p.m, The St. Joseph Church of Christ will present “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever.”

We asked Ben Gilly, who is Bob Bradley, to answer five questions for us.

What can you tell me about your character?
I play the character of Bob Bradley, husband to Grace and father to Beth and Charlie; a
solid family man. Bob is begrudgingly tasked to help his wife with wrangling the kids together for
the pageant.

What has been your favorite part about the pageant?
I’ve enjoyed watching the children of the cast grow and develop their characters. Many
of them came in with little to no theatre experience and have really learned a lot and put
together a great show.

What do you hope the audience takes away from the story?
While presented mostly as a comedy, the core of the show is the biblical telling of
Christ’s birth. Audience members should expect to laugh, cry, and learn about the meaning of
Christmas. I hope everyone is able to see a little bit of themselves in the characters of the story.

What has it been like acting with your kids?
My daughter, Ellie, has loved every bit of this show. My wife and I have both always had
a soft spot for drama and theatre and it’s been awesome to watch our girl express herself and
learn how to have a stage presence. It’s been a real bonding moment for her and I too since we
have some inside jokes and stories that the rest of our family hasn’t been a part of.

What is your favorite part of the Christmas season overall?
I’m a sucker for classic nostalgia. I love driving around town looking at lights and
decorations, watching ALL the holiday movie favorites (including Die Hard), singing carols,
spending time with family; just all the traditions of the season!

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