Oz in the News 8.5.14

2349A1326-CED4-6B86-55E6C4B1650718F5.jpg.pagespeed.ce.irviaiK3nYBRIGHT NOW BEYOND is an Enjoyable Evening of Camp and Charm  BRIGHT NOW BEYOND, a new musical by Daniel Alexander Jones and Bobby Halvorson, now playing at Salvage Vanguard Theater, is a fresh, loose adaptation of L. Frank Baum‘s THE MARVELOUS LAND OF OZ. For the most part, the new piece works very well and is charming. The cast is uniformly excellent and possess great singing voices. In particular, Jomama Jones, in the dual roles of Ozma of Oz and Jack Pumpkinhead, is exceptional. One needs a program to know it is the same performer. While Ozma is campy and slightly tongue in cheek, Jack is a beautifully drawn character that you will remember long after the house light have come up and you’ve left the theatre. As The Wogglebug, Jarrett King is a delight, especially in his scene with the magnifying glass explaining some of the artifacts of Oz. Jaques Colimon, as Tip, is charming and possesses one of the finest voices I have heard on an Austin stage. Florinda Bryant, as Mombi, is a powerful presence who makes the most of each moment she has on stage. As Jellia Jamb, Heather Hanna is a scene stealer. She is a delight, with exquisite comedic timing and one of the best written characters in the piece. Also worth mentioning are Robert Faires as The Scarecrow, who has a wonderful commanding presence, and Wesley Bryant, Nitra Gutierrez and Alexis Scott in multiple roles, but especially as The Waiters. For tickets and information, please visit www.salvagevanguard.org

Coronado Ups the “Oz”  “The Wizard of Oz” is Coronado’s classic tale, thanks to being the one-time home of “Oz” author L. Frank Baum. And city shops are celebrating the burg’s famous property through Sunday, Aug. 10. Coronado’s Main Street won’t be paved with yellow bricks, but several shop windows will boast an “Oz” theme “built around original poster entries from the Oz Con Poster Contest.” “Special menu items” will pop up, too, like the Coronado Brewing Company’s Wicked Witch Bitter Ale. And you may see other Emerald City-like touches, from street pole banners to merch. Speaking of merchandise, have you been to the gift shop at Hotel del Coronado? No? And you’re a fan of “The Wizard of Oz”? There’s so much Dorothy going on there — Dorothy and Marilyn Monroe.

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