Oz in the News 4.15.11

It’s Not Kansas Anymore as Wizard of Oz Goes 3D   Starz Animation’s Rob Silvestri will be directing. Previously Rob created and directed the multiple award-winning animated short Ormie and worked extensively on Gnomeo & Juliet and the Tim Burton produced animated film 9.  According to Taylor, “Coming off the tremendous job that Starz Animation Toronto did on the hit CG animated feature film Gnomeo and Juliet, they were undeniably the place to go for world class production talent and experience to execute on such an internationally known and beloved property like OZ.”  “We’re thrilled to now step into the producing role and maximize the strength of our studio on all levels,” Young added, “Creatively, the OZ3D project is hilarious, perfect for the modern audience and at the same time is respectful of the underlying material.”

Boston Pops Need Your Videos for a Virtual Singalong of Somewhere Over the Rainbow  We’ll never be able to out sing Judy Garland, but the attempts ought to be pretty entertaining. The Boston Pops are celebrating its 125th anniversary, and invites all of America to join in a virtual sing-a-long of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” To participate, simply post a video on YouTube of yourself, your friends or whoever singing your own version of the classic, and email the link  along with contact info and geographical location to overtherainbow@bso.org.  People of all ages are welcome (so tape your cute kids) and video submissions are due by Sat., April 26. Videos will be featured on the Boston Pops YouTube channel, on the Boston Pops website www.bostonpops.org, and at Boston Pops performances throughout the season.

Munchkins are the unsung heroes of Wizard Of Oz stage show  “I love the matinée days: once we’ve done the first show, we have a while to wait until the evening show, so we play games on our Nintendos and all get taken out to a restaurant.”  It’s all been a lot of fun – the chaperones, the backstage commotion of costume, hair and microphone fitting, the stars like Michael Crawford, the various dogs playing Toto, and especially the performance itself.  Nerves? Not at all. “It’s the auditions that are scary, and can be quite cruel. The audition was the hardest I’ve ever done.”  Ava was one of some 2,000 applicants for three teams of ten Munchkins performing in rotation, finally landing the part after five or six recalls to further auditions, each lasting up to a day.

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