Oz in the News 7.15.11

Oz The Great And Powerful’s Logo Revealed  Mad Men actress Abigail Spencer tweeted a photo of a sign taken on the set of Oz with the hashtag #thisishappening. Spencer plays Mrs. Hamilton in Raimi’s film, a woman who reportedly comes under the spell of a magician (Franco) as he is performing in Kansas. As the story will go, Franco’s character will ride in a hot air balloon that gets caught in a storm, transporting him to the magical land of Oz. Once there, in the land over the rainbow, he finds himself trapped in a power struggle between three witches (Williams, Weisz and Kunis).

Return to ‘Oz’  The Fox Performing Arts Center and the Mission Inn will follow the Yellow Brick Road back to 1939 next weekend with three events that celebrate “The Wizard of Oz.”  “An Oz Affaire” begins July 22 with a 7 p.m. dessert reception, featuring performances by singer Sam Harris and artist Joe Yakovetic. Special guests include Margaret Pellegrini, who played a Munchkin in the classic film, and Robert Baum, a descendant of “Oz” novelist L. Frank Baum.  An “Oz” luncheon at the Mission Inn follows at 11:30 a.m. July 23, with a screening of the film back at the Fox at 2 p.m.

‘The Yellow Brick Road’ Latin kids’ musical riffs off ‘The Wizard of Oz’  “Dora is embarrassed about who she is, which is a typical state for adolescents,” says Virginia Cavaliere, who plays Dora. “She’s searching for answers, like every teenager.” She’s grappling with old-school traditions and new ways. Her benchmark 15th birthday makes that struggle a priority. A curandera, a woman who practices folk medicine, sees Dora rebelling against her quinceañera and sends her to Oz to deal with her conflicted feelings. Dora dances down the you-know-what to you-know-where to the beat of mambo and merengue-infused songs by Jaime Lozano and Tommy Newman, who also worked on the book. There, right on cue, she meets Scarecrow (Ryan Duncan), who can’t keep English and Spanish straight; Tino (Frank Viveros), a walking-talking food cart made from tin who lacks passion, and a Mountain Lion (Cedric Leiba Jr.) with zero faith in himself.

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