After four years of negotiation, Trinity Theatre in Tunbridge Wells has secured the rights to the classic, prestigious Royal Shakespeare Company adaptation of The Wizard of Oz. The production, which featured Imelda Staunton, was an immediate success when it opened at London’s Barbican Theatre with The Times calling it “a most marvellous show.”
This new production, from the creative team behind the hugely successful productions of Oliver! and Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella, is a spectacular show for all the family. It includes much-loved songs from the Oscar-winning movie score including; Somewhere Over The Rainbow, Follow The Yellow Brick Road, If I Only Had A Heart and We’re Off To See The Wizard.
The cast includes Scarlett Leigh Fawcett as Dorothy returning to Trinity Theatre having played the title role in last Christmas’s sell-out production of Cinderella. Spencer Lee Osbourne also joins the cast as the Cowardly Lion following his portrayal of Lloyd Boateng in Trinity Theatre’s summer production, Richard Bean’s One Man Two Guvnors. Ina Marie Smith plays Glinda/Aunt Em, Jenny Wills the Wicked Witch, Laurie Denman plays Scarecrow and Gardiner Frazer-Hill the Tin Man.
Farm girl Dorothy is transported from her home in Kansas to the magical kingdom of Oz, where, with the help of a Scarecrow, a Tin Man, a Cowardly Lion and her dog Toto she must find a way home. Can the wonderful Wizard of Oz help her, or will the Wicked Witch of the West and her flying monkeys get their hands on her very special ruby slippers?
Director John Martin, says “This timeless story connects with all of us and I believe is extremely pertinent today. Whilst capturing the show’s magic and spectacle, I will also explore its themes of betrayal, the immigrant experience and survival after a natural disaster – the twister that carries Dorothy to Oz is a real phenomenon that has a major impact on her community.”
“The show will also focus on the important and optimistic message that the qualities that we need we already possess – Dorothy returns from Oz ready to lead her community. All this, I believe, can be incorporated in a magical production that will move, inspire and delight audiences.”
In celebration of Trinity Theatre’s 35th year, The Wizard of Oz will be the most spectacular family Christmas show yet. Creating a musical of this magnitude has been a significant undertaking and Trinity are proud to be involving 24 local young people in the Oz Company. Many of these who have grown up attending Trinity productions and Youth Theatre and this will be their first opportunity to work with professionals, providing a unique and inspiring experience for all those involved, and all who come to see it.
The Wizard of Oz is sponsored by Berry & Lamberts Solicitors and supported by The Times of Tunbridge Wells, So Magazine and KMFM.
The Wizard of Oz appears, for 26 performances only, at The Trinity Theatre, Tunbridge Wells from Thursday 14th Dec 2017 to Wednesday 3rd January 2018 (No performances on Mondays) Tickets, priced from £16.00 are available from the theatre box office on 01892 678678 or online at www.trinitytheatre.net