ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – Twin brothers Braxton and Brody Parris were born with a lot to live up to. Their mother Corissa Parris is a long time basketball star, grandmother Pug Parris is the first female track coach in school history, father and grandfather Brad and Ricky both record setting pole vaulters and McMurry coaches. You might say the bar was set pretty high.
“Your brain tells, says my whole family was great in sports so obviously that’s what I’m gonna do,” said Brody.
Although their parents never pressured them to follow in their footsteps, the brothers tried their hand at every sport under the sun, from football to track and field.
“Everything you can think of, karate, martial arts, but it just wasn’t what we enjoyed,” Braxton expressed.
Nothing really stuck with them. That is until they found them selves in the spotlight. They were cast in leading roles in their third grade play.
“I was Willy Wonka and he was Charlie. I think we really liked it and we just kept on going,” Braxton recalled.
Their father, Brad Parris, shared that he could tell this was something meant for Brody and Braxton.
“At that point I’m like. I think we may be on to something and you could just tell they were just. They were different, more confidant individuals when they were on stage,” Brad Parris expressed.
From that moment on, the Parris family supported their sons 100 percent. The way they saw it, the boys might be breaking tradition, but they weren’t breaking character.
“It doesn’t matter if you’re on a track, or you’re under the lights doing musical theater. Passion and effort. It’s a constant so to see them do that. As a dad, that’s what I’m very very happy about,” Brad Parris expressed.
Their grandfather said he enjoys seeing the twins discover something they love to do.
“You enjoy that more than anything else. Don’t really worry about what they wanna do, but you want them to enjoy what they do,” Ricky Parris explained.
A philosophy that Ricky practiced with his son as well. He said he never pushed him to follow, but let him decide what he really enjoyed and put his all towards that.
“My dad says he loves it just as much as he did watching a basketball game or a football game,” said Braxton.
“I think both of them would rather watch us do something that we love to do and watch us excel and succeed in that thing than watching us do something that we aren’t as good at and we didn’t really have a passion for,” Brody explained.
Taking a different path doesn’t mean the Parris passion is gone to the wayside. Their father said he enjoys seeing his boys put just as much work into their performance skills as he has watched countless athletes do before.
“I always tell them y’know, confidence to me is a direct result of the preparation you put into things and I can attest. There’s not a day goes by in our household that they’re not performing out in front, in the living room, in the kitchen. It doesn’t stop,” said Brad.
Their dedication paid off, as the boys continue to rehearse, the fruits of their labor are coming back in folds. Recently, they returned from the Jr. Theater Festival in Atlanta where they performed scenes from James and the Giant Peach with Mrs. Z’s Performing Arts Studio.
Both boys received the all star performance award and Braxton received a callback on a national theater video campaign in New York.
“Even when we aren’t in a show, we’re always taking voice classes or lessons,” Brody explained.
For which, their parents couldn’t be more proud.
“I’m a theater dad now. And it’s what I want to be,” Brad Parris expressed.