Note: Christopher’s last show as Billy in the Marblehead Little Theatre’s production of Billy Elliot The Musical was on July 3, 2016.
Debut: June 24, 2016 (Marblehead, MA)
Total Performances as Billy: 5 (No partial shows)
Chistopher Renaud was 12 years old (D.O.B = 20-Sep-2003) upon his debut as Billy. He is from Concord, New Hampshire, where he is a 6th Grader at the Rundlett Middle School. Favorite hobbies include playing the cello and drums, making movies, skiing and swimming. One unusual hobby is cup stacking, which he learned via a 4th Grade club at the Beaver Meadow Elementary School while a student there.
Christopher began dancing at the tender age of four, and a year later appeared on stage in his first musical. He has studied ballet at the Eastern Ballet Institute in Concord.
Among his previous theatrical experiences, Christopher has appeared extensively in various youth theatre programs and community theatre productions in and near his hometown of Concord. Some recent productions have included:
- Lost in Wonderland (New Hampshire Theatre Factory – Stage Setters Youth Program)
- Bye Bye Birdie (Albert Peterson) (Rundlett Middle School)
- Sleepy Hollow (Captain Jordan) (New Hampshire Theatre Factory – Stage Setters Youth Program)
- Shrek The Musical Jr. (The Mad Hatter) (Community Players of Concord – Children’s Theatre Project)
- A Charlie Brown Christmas and A Christmas Carol (The Palace Theatre, Manchester, NH)
“Billy Elliot has been my favorite musical for a while,” Christopher said. “I just love the music.” Christopher first fell in love with BETM two years ago when he saw the regional production of the show at the Ogunquit Playhouse in Maine. Back then watching the Billy, Christopher says he remembers thinking to himself “I couldn’t do that”. But what he didn’t realize was he was 3-5 years younger than Ogunquit’s two Billys (Noah Parets was 13 and had almost 100 shows as Billy under his belt by then and Sam Faulkner was 15) and had far less experience and training at that point than they did.
He eventually decided that with his additional two years of training, maybe he could Be Billy after all. So he began looking for a production of the show he could audition for. At the time of his decision to go for it, he had just missed a BETM audition at the Palace Theater in Manchester, New Hampshire and was looking for a new show to join. His voice teacher encouraged him to try out at Marblehead. “It’s a really great place,” he told Christopher.
So try out he did. Christopher auditioned using the big number from the show – Electricity. It was the song he had sung at his first voice recital. He said “I knew it by heart. I felt confident with that one”.
In preparation for opening in BETM at Marblehead, Christopher took weekly dance lessons with Cristina White in New Hampshire, and said that the show pushed his dancing skills to another level.
Asked what his favorite part of the show was, Christopher said, “Even though the dancing is the most challenging part, I think it’s also my favorite part because it challenges me to keep going, and I love dancing on my own.”
And when asked what he hopes the audience will take away from seeing this show, Christopher replied, “That it was inspirational, exciting, and that there is more acceptance of different interests, such as boys dancing.”
When Christopher debuted as Billy on 24-Jun-2016 he had the distinction of being the 150th actor in the world to play this most demanding role.
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