Monthly Archives: September 2014

Oz in the News 9.29.14

Nikkal_Multiplied_640_SLMM-Hays-KS-2014Nikkal_Dorothy-is-Still-Waiting_640_Hays-KSNancy Egol Nikkal Latest Exhibition a Nod to the Wizard of Oz  Nancy Egol Nikkal’s current installation, on display at the Hays Art Center Gallery, Hays, KS, opened August 22. The installation, “There’s No Place Like Home,” is open to the public until October 4, 2014. This is in conjunction with the Society of Layerists in Multi-Media (SLMM) National Conference, which the facility will be hosting from October 1-5th. A New York-based contemporary collage artist with a focus on abstract, geometric works on paper, canvas and panel, Nancy Egol Nikkal created “There’s No Place Like Home” as a contemporary spin on the American classic, “The Wizard of Oz.”  “I was thinking about the yellow brick road in the Wizard of Oz movie and painted the background yellow in one collage…” Egol Nikkal continued. “I was thinking about how the wizard’s balloon lifted off without Dorothy and embellished the other collage background with tiny pasted drawings of air balloons. Each collage includes fashion designer shoes embellished with red acrylic paint…In my collages, [I’m trying to create the perception] Dorothy is still waiting to get home…”

Blagg: Oz, Baum and me  I owe a lot to the “Wizard of Oz” … not the movie, particularly, but to L. Frank Baum, the guy who wrote that wonderful series of books about Dorothy Gale and her friends and their adventures in a marvelous world of make-believe. You see, that book, and the 13 sequels Baum wrote, got me started on reading … and taught me to speed read, an attribute that has served me well throughout my whole life.  I was slow to start reading, back at Zia Elementary School in Albuquerque, N.M. in the late 1940s. But the school was unusual for that time, in that it featured a “progressive” approach to learning — a lot like we’d call the “Montessori method” today.  So my teachers were patient, and then when I took in interest in the first Oz book, “The Wonderful World of Oz,” with its large type and glorious illustrations by W. W. Denslow, they just let me be. For most of the next year, I couldn’t wait to get to school and find out what was happening to Tik-Tok and Ozma and Scraps, the patchwork doll. When the movie came out, in 1939, I wasn’t born yet. But I distinctly remember the excitement I felt when it came to Albuquerque — probably when it was re-released in 1949. My grandmother took my sister and me downtown (an adventure in itself, since we lived way out on the outskirts of the city, on the edge of the desert, in a post-war housing development) and we went into the — air-conditioned! — movie theater with joy and anticipation. To my dismay, the Wicked Witch of the West scared the heck out of me! Barbara and I were cowering in our seats as she yelled threats at Dorothy and her friends from a housetop in the forest — and those flying monkeys! And then we were saved … the theater blew up.

Oz in the News 9.27.14

40-ep-Wizard-of-Oz-Epsom-03Scarecrow Dave Benson Phillips walks up hill with Wizard of Oz characters in Epsom A kids TV presenter dressed as a scarecrow walked up a grassy hill, not a yellow brick road, with Dorothy, the Tin Man, the Cowardly Lion and Toto the dog this week. Dave Benson Phillips is best known for helping kids to dunk their parents in gunge on TV game show Get Your Own Back and hanging out with puppets on children’s TV programme Playdays.  Benson Phillips jokes that he used to have a “pathological fear of dogs” and he had hoped that an automated dog would be used in the production.

New Wizard of Oz Radio Show Airs Tuesday Night Radio Theater Project, a new collection of audio dramas, tells the story that started the series of books about Dorothy, her dog Toto and her many friends in the fairy country of Oz. Part one of the Wizard of Oz radio play, which airs Tuesday at 10 p.m. on WHAV with an encore three hours later, is based on the original story written in 1900. The first truly American fairy tale written in an American idiom. The Radio Theater Project tries to capture that flavor in this adaptation. In the original tale Oz is just as real as Kansas a place that Dorothy will revisit many times. Based on the story by L. Frank Baum, the program was adapted for radio by Joseph McGuire.

Oz in the News 9.21.14

-331821dd236851fbDorothy in Oz: ‘The Wizard of Oz’ at the Portland Children’s Museum, through the eyes of a child  At 3 years old, Dorothy “Dot” Houston doesn’t know much about “The Wizard of Oz.” She’s never seen the movie, her parents tell me, and she wasn’t named after the hero of the story, but rather after her great-grandmother and great-great aunt. That didn’t stop friends and family from making the connection. “We have three pairs of ruby red slippers,” her mom Abby says.

Fans get to see live Wizard of Oz concert with Symphoria Sean O’Loughlin is conducting this concert. “The munchkins seem to really jump off the screen, hopefully not too much and “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” seems like that much more over the rainbow,” says O’Loughlin. Many of us have seen the 1939 MGM classic “The Wizard of Oz,” but the movie comes with a pre-recorded soundtrack. To start off its 2014-2015 season, Symphoria is providing every tuba, trumpet and tambourine live for the concert “Oz and Orchestra.”

Accessorise your pretty feet Four thousand six hundred rubies and 50 carats of diamonds — this is what these bright pair of heels created by the famous jewellery house, are made of. When what you’re wearing is essentially jewellery for the feet, what’s the price that you can be expected to pay? Why, just the piffling little amount of $3 million, of course. The story goes that Harry Winston’s son Ronald wanted to create a special pair of heels to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Judy Garland film Wizard of Oz. He promptly recreated the shoes worn by the actress in the film, wholly with precious stones, and voila! No other pair of shoes can match their sparkle.

65th Carnival of Flowers proves to be the best MUNCHKINS won out in the keenly contested champion float of the Carnival of Flowers Grand Central Floral Parade which was awarded to the entry from Woolworths. In keeping with this year’s parade theme of Storybook of Colour, Woolworths staff and Pine Valley Flowers joined to create a Wizard of Oz themed float.

Oz in the News 9.20.14

l_frank_baum‘Wizard of Oz’ Author’s Life Story Coming to the Big Screen (Exclusive) New Line Cinema has preemptively scooped up spec script Road to Oz, written by hot rising talent Josh Golden. Beau Flynn will produce via his New Line-based FlynnPictureCo. This is how hot Golden and Road to Oz are: The screenwriter and his script, which chronicles the early days of whimsical author L. Frank Baum, are finalists for the 2014 Academy Nicholl Fellowships, which were announced earlier this week.  Golden worked with Nellie Bellflower, who produced Finding Neverland, and Michael Mislove on developing the script. Bellflower and Mislove will now also produce Road to Oz with Flynn.  Scott Sheldon will oversee the project for FlynnPicture Co. Michael Disco and Sam Brown are shepherding it for New Line. The plan is to attach a director as soon as possible. Golden is repped by Resolution. He’ll find out if he received the Nicholls Fellowship when the winner is announced in October.

Bewitched: Roger S. Baum talks about Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return  “The Oz legacy which began 75 years ago is not going to disappear any time soon with the emergence of multimedia platforms and the popularity of visual effects blockbusters like Oz the Great and Powerful (2013).  “There is nothing but pure excitement ahead.  It will slowly take on a more modern look including new worlds and adventures into space.  I touched on this in my new book, The Oz Enigma [Tate Publishing].”  Roger S. Baum concludes, “I hope Oz will continue forever.  It has so much goodness and soft teachings that are sound advice for all.  What I mean by soft teaching, it does not shout good lessons.  It is just there within all the stories.”

Wizard Of One Conjures Albertan Land of Oz  Dorothy is recast as an elderly man named Frank, a nod to the creator, or coincidence? No matter, Frank proves to be just as feisty as the young lady in the original. His lion, scarecrow and “tin man” in this adventure are Jackson, an old man with dementia, Zoey, a cantankerous resident that needs a new heart, and Jerome, this show’s hyper-sensitive cowardly germophobe a-la-Howie Mandel. But wait – all these characters and a number more are played by one man – actor and co-creator Neil James. Calgarian James and his fellow Albertan colleague writer/actor Amos Altman make this geriatric Oz a local affair, as it could take place right here in Calgary for all the audience knows.

Oz in the News 9.18.14

sj.atr_01‘After the Rainbow’: Watch Judy Garland watch herself  Judy Garland collaborates with Judy Garland in “After the Rainbow,” a video installation that combines clips from “The Wizard of Oz” with footage from one of her 1960s performances. “We’ve always been interested in the way older women can be associated with a sense of expiration or invisibility,” says Dominique Angeloro, who with her sister Dan makes up art collective Soda_Jerk. “We want to re-represent those figures as resilient and experienced.” (Film as a tomb for icons is the thesis of Soda_Jerk’s related live video performance, “The Carousel,” set for 7 p.m. Oct. 3. National Museum of Women in the Arts, 1250 New York Ave. NW; Fri. through Nov. 2, free.

Judy Garland in Beverley  The International Judy Garland Club is pleased to announce a weekend celebration of Judy Garland’s life. Author Joan Coulson will be flying in from California for the event to sign copies of her new Judy biography ‘Always for Judy – Witness to the Joy and Genius of Judy Garland’ and to share her memories of the star. Video producer and editor Frank Labrador will be another special guest. He has produced several tribute videos and documentaries in honour of Judy, including ‘Judy 90: A Celebration’ (2012). These films have not been seen outside of Los Angeles and New York. will also present ‘Judy Garland’s love affair with the UK, a photographic tribute.’ He says: “Judy held the UK in great affection, and her visits here were often high points in her career, not only London, but great provincial across the north of England, including Leeds, Birmingham, Manchester and also Scotland and Ireland.”

Oz in the News 9.17.14

560321-245eb17a-3d2e-11e4-b4eb-3aaea0238ac5The AFL Footy Show takes on classic Judy Garland movie to cap its 21st birthday celebrations  They’re TV’s wizards of Oz — the guys who have collectively kept The Footy Show on air for 21 seasons. Now Sam Newman, Garry Lyon, James Brayshaw, Billy Brownless and Shane Crawford have re-created the famous characters from the classic Judy Garland movie. Newman has been there from the very start — March 24, 1994 — and says Channel 9 management thought it wouldn’t last. “They (Nine) said let’s see how it goes for six weeks — and that was 21 years ago,” Newman says.

-510124They’re Off to See the Wizard… 75 fans dressed up as Dorothy for 75th anniversary  During the day, eye witnesses were astonished as they stumbled across the lost 75 ladies in blue and white who felt a long way from home, asking passers-by for directions back to Kansas, but happily taking part in the occasional selfie with those who asked.  Later the Dorothies, with Toto in tow, spread around London, finding their way onto the Underground, no doubt looking for the yellow Circle Line.

Oz in the News 9.13.14

934830_721497131249809_3295006259935195304_nStudent collects Wizard of Oz items for public display For 20 years, David Dicket, senior music major of Thibodaux, collected Wizard of Oz items, which he displays for the public. Dicket has a display at the Thibodaux Library, which began on Aug. 1 and will continue to be displayed until December. This display features items from 75 years of Oz, items from Baum’s Oz books, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) memorabilia, Disney films: Return to Oz and Oz the Great and Powerful, smaller Oz films: Muppets, Sci-Fi, Legends, Journey Back and The Wiz. The display also shows the earlier items of his collection: the Dorothy doll, handmade dolls from his home movies, an Oz t-shirt, board game and a portrait made by his dad.

Movie Review – The Wizard of Oz: An IMAX 3D Experience  The spectacular 1939 production has lost none of its splendour, marking its 75th anniversary with a re-release in stunning IMAX 3D. Everything from Dorothy’s farm in Kansas to the forests and poppy fields of Oz, and of course Munchkinland and Emerald City, is vastly impressive and wondrous, and the 3D conversion is seamless, visually striking, and totally immersive throughout the film. Out in IMAX theatres around the UK from September 12th, this celebratory Wizard of Oz IMAX 3D release is a show not to be missed. It’s a true classic: a timeless story of childlike innocence and wonder, whimsy and magic, friendship and bravery. Whether you’re a long-time fan or a newcomer to the spectacle, it’s definitely going to captivate your imagination and have you humming the familiar tunes in no time at all.

“There’s No Place Like Brenham”  Members of the Cub Company dress up as characters in “The Wizard of Oz” to celebrate the Cub’s upcoming homecoming game Wednesday evening during the annual homecoming parade in downtown. The float featured Savannah Stewart as the Glenda(sic) the Good Witch, Brandon Schultz as the Wizard, Kayla Kubeczka as the Wicked Witch, Alyssa Faykus as the Cowardly Lion, Callie Anne Stegemeier as the Scarecrow, Brennan Upchurch as the Tin Woodman and Laurna Kiemsteadt as Dorothy. The group built the float all by themselves for the parade.

Oz in the News 9.11.14

WoO-Script copyRare Wizard of Oz Script & Painting Coming to Auction  This year marks the 75th anniversary of The Wizard of Oz film, which means the time is right for buyers and sellers who focus on related memorabilia, such as autographs, scripts, storyboards and concept art, and costumes. Profiles in History is offering these three very special Wizard pieces at a 4-day auction event in Los Angeles, October 17-20. An original, 113-page, studio-bound script dated October 10, 1938. According to the catalogue, this version of the script “includes important revisions by writer Edgar Allan Woolf, the visionary who changed the famous slippers from silver to ruby, inserted the dream sequence, and is responsible for the fantasy aspects of the film–all elements not in the L. Frank Baum novel.” It is estimated to sell for $12,000-15,000. An original matte painting from the film depicts the woods at the foot of the Wicked Witch’s castle. Executed in colored pencil, gouache, and chalk on black artist board, the image is “attributable to the scene when our heroic quartet ambushes the ‘Winkie Guards’ to steal their uniforms and gain access to the castle.” The estimate is $8,000-12,000. A complete press book with original herald, published by MGM in 1939. The cover features bold window card art, and the book is illustrated with production details, plot synopsis, cast list, sheet music, etc. and includes a record of all the movie tie-in advertisements. Its estimate is $5,000-7,000.

Inside Gia and Dominic Lopez’s Wizard of Oz Birthday Bash On Saturday, Mario and Courtney Lopez invited over 40 family and friends to join them in celebrating daughter Gia and son Dominic‘s birthdays at PLAY Indoor Playground in Glendale, California. Guests were greeted by a sign that read, “Bell out of order, please knock,” and were invited to follow the yellow brick road into the Wizard of Oz themed party room, which had been decorated with hot air balloons hanging from the ceiling and play stations set up to look like scenes from the movie.

Oz in the News 9.8.14

1410169092055_Image_galleryImage_BNPS_co_uk_01202_558833_PJudy Garland’s gingham Wizard of Oz dress set to sell for £180,000 A costume worn by child star Judy Garland during the making of the classic film The Wizard of Oz is expected to sell for £180,000. The ‘test’ dress and pinafore was one of several that were made for Garland while producers experimented with how they wanted her character Dorothy to look in the 1939 movie. The outfit was the first of the prototypes made to feature a blue and white Gingham pinafore – a feature the producers stuck with for the final dress design. Although Garland, who was 17 at the time, never wore the dress on film, several photographs exist of her wearing it on set. The images will be sold alongside the outfit at an auction dedicated to film memorabilia.

BabyLit releases new color primer based on L. Frank Baum’s Oz “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: A Colors Primer” reflects the colorful, busy world of Oz. Each page is based on one of the story’s key features or characters of that color surrounded by many other objects. For example, the yellow brick road fittingly represents the color yellow while the Tin Man represents the color silver. Because the primer is based on the novel by L. Frank Baum, some of the elements portrayed may be new for those who are more familiar with the 1939 film adaptation.

Oz in the News 9.4.14 (Back to School Special)

Build a Wizard of Oz birdhouse Saturday at Home Depot, free  Build a Wizard of Oz birdhouse this Saturday at Home Depot. It’s free and open to kids ages 5 to 12. The build will start at 9 a.m. and end at noon. Come learn how to build a Wizard of Oz TM birdhouse. All kids get to keep their craft, receive a FREE certificate of achievement, a Workshop Apron, and a commemorative pin while supplies last.  Children must be present at the store to participate in the workshop and receive the kit, apron and pin. Kids Workshop activities are scheduled on a first come/first served basis. Please do not arrive before 9:00 a.m. Thank you for registering online to help us better plan our craft kit quantities needed.

The Wizard of Oz – 75 years on no movie experience quite beats it  These days the movie seems like a familiar family favourite or holiday season staple but its history is troubled and complex. Its Irish-American director Victor Fleming was credited with the feature, though he was the fifth director to steer the production. Adapted from L. Frank Baum’s novel, many have looked to it for meaning. Baum was of Scots-Irish descent and was an Irish nationalist, and some have thought his Emerald City a symbol of shining Irish purity. But the movie’s most notably creative figure was Irish set designer Cedric Gibbons. Gibbons was a visionary of remarkable imagination who pioneered deep perspective in cinema. The son of an architect, he’d studied the Art Deco style and how it discarded ornamentation but retained grandeur. Gibbons understood that cinematic projection readily depicted the clean lines of Art Deco, making both magnificence and minutiae clearly seen. His special effects aroused viewers’ perceptions on every inch of the screen, almost foreshadowing 3D ahead of its time. It also has a terrific musical soundtrack, which gave the world Ding Dong! The Witch is Dead, the celebratory number that, for many, best marked the death of Margaret Thatcher.