Oz in the News 6.5.12

The Munchkin Coroner Returns to Oz   Meinhardt Raabe (1915-2010)  At last remains only that old ache—
the longing for an elsewhere out of reach.
Reunion parades with crowds clapping
were no balm. Rustling my blue robes,
I’d feel my breath ratcheting.
After all the world a blur of skirts
at eye level, crotches I spoke to
and made a lowly math of, each
one a face to be recognized, still I was wee.
Itty. Give me Culver City. Oz, glittering.
The cameras, Judy Tom-Thumbing me
with weird teenaged mother-love
down to the pith, to my little plum pit
heart, kneeling with a box of chocolates,
cooing sweets to the sweet,
pink sleepyheads yawning,
a Munchkin chorus line, the brick road spiraling.
Four lines I learned to sing, hymn-like,
and rewind. But oh, I must aver,
most sincerely, it’s the plight
of striped stockinged legs limp
beneath the pitched house, hint
of dead witch that sets me weeping.
Somewhere over there,
give me more heel-clicking.
In The End, I learn to trace
the return-wish backwards:
If I only had. A tornado. A home.
There’s no place.

Crooked Tree dancers to perform “Wizard of Oz” “All of the choreography is very diverse and suits the different characters well. My role is definitely a challenge for me. I love doing classical ballet but as the Cowardly Lion, I am challenged with more contemporary ballet this year. I am really looking forward to seeing all the hard work come together on stage for the audience to enjoy.”

Search for Wizard of Oz’s Dorothy begins today in Vancouver  Over the Rainbow, hosted by comedian Daryn Jones, will also feature a secondary search for the role of Toto, Dorothy’s feisty pooch.  Though Toto was played by a brindle Cairn Terrier in The Wizard of Oz 1939 film, any breed may try out, said Mirvish.  “I think this is dog-blind casting,” he noted with a laugh. “You could have a Great Dane and as long as it will sit in your lap, it may qualify as Toto on the television show.

Oz-Stravaganza ends with special donation  Oz-Stravaganza wrapped up in Chittenango on Sunday, but not before the festival’s special guests left their mark on the village. Margaret Pellegrini and Andre De Shields both donated items to the All Things Oz Museum, which was dedicated to the works of native son L. Frank Baum. Pellegrini, one of the munchkins in the 1939 film, “The Wizard of Oz”, donated replicas of the hat, dress and shoes she wore in the movie. De Shields, who originated the role of the “The Wiz” on Broadway, donated a pair of the oversized emerald glasses he wore in the Tony award-winning musical.

Oz book develops character based on local child who fell victim to violence  In “Family of Oz,” Wallace worked to incorporate elements of Aadon’s personality into the character named for him. His love of Spider-Man translated into the creation of a purple spider to serve as his companion. And Aadon’s charge — to oversee a field of pinwheels — was derived from the Olmsted family’s annual effort to plant blue and silver pinwheels across Madison County to raise awareness about child abuse and its prevention through Aadon’s Peace Fund.

Stoneybrook residents bring ‘Wizard of Oz’ to life The 1939 award-winning film starred 16-year-old Judy Garland as Dorothy. Stoneybrook’s version starred Maxine Taylor, 91. In fact, the youngest cast member of Stoneybrook’s production of Oz as 74; the oldest were 97.

Oz book author plans signing  Roger S. Baum, great-grandson of the original Oz book series creator L. Frank Baum, has continued the tales of Oz with books of his own including “Dorothy of Oz,” “The Lion of Oz and the Badge of Courage” and more. Baum is scheduled to sign books at noon Saturday at the 8915 W. Charleston Blvd. Barnes & Noble in Las Vegas.

Des O’Connor Joins The Wizard of Oz for Hit West End Show’s Final Season  Despite appearing at the London Palladium in more than 1,200 solo performances, The Wizard of Oz marks Des O’Connor’s first appearance in a musical at the venue. Following in the footsteps of both Russell Grant and Michael Crawford, O’Connor will play the Wizard from the 22nd of May through to the final show on the 2nd of September. He will also take on the role of Professor Marvel, and appear alongside Sophie Evans, runner-up in the BBC’s Over the Rainbow.

Sheriff’s sale of former Westside home of Judy Garland is canceled  In Times news reports from the time of Garland’s residency, Luft describes the singer as “mentally unbalanced and emotionally disturbed,” claiming she had tried to kill herself at least 20 times and used inappropriate language in front of the children. She filed for divorce on the grounds of mental cruelty and objected to the removal of several items from the house, including some beds. “My children are sleeping in them,” she told a judge.

Three Songs That Got Away  In advance of the imminent publication of the webzine Garlands For Judy (formerly a paper publication under the direction of the late Scott Schechter and soon to be an online version under the direction of The Judy Room founder and webmaster Scott Brogan) and the celebrations related to what would have been Judy Garland’s 90th birthday on June 10th, The Judy Room is proud to publish the sheet music to the three songs that were written by Harold Arlen and Ira Gershwin for A Star Is Born, but went unused: “I’m Off the Downbeat,” “Green Light Ahead,” and “Dancing Partner.”

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