Oz in the News 3.13.16

imageWorkshop to reflect on the ‘Wisdom of Oz’  A renowned psychologist and great-granddaughter of Wizard of Oz author L Frank Baum will visit Carrick next month. San Diego native Dr Gita Morena will be leading a unique two-day workshop and evening seminar on the ‘Wisdom of Oz’ in Belfast. An author, international seminar leader and certified sandplay therapist, Dr Morena is a teaching member of the International Society for Sandplay Therapy and programme coordinator for the professional certificate programme in Sandplay Studies at the University of California.  The Belfast workshops will offer a way to explore ‘The Wonderful Wizard of Oz’ as a metaphor for personal growth, spiritual transformation, and the emergence of the feminine. Titled ‘The Journey Home – Follow the Yellow Brick Road’, they will be held at Edgehill Theological College Belfast, on April 23 and 24. The evening seminar, ‘Travelling Through Oz: Understanding Symbolism and Imagery’, will be hosted by Queen’s School of Education on Monday, April 25.

SXSW 2016 Review: THE SLIPPERS Reveals Unexpected Hollywood Treasures  Granted, the new documentary by Morgan White probably starts off on the wrong foot by recounting its setup in a pedestrian, expected manner: the popular books by L. Frank Baum, the movie, its incredible popularity, Judy Garland and the red shoes, blah blah blah. Dedicated classic film fans have heard it all before. A tiny bit of patience is rewarded, however, once the focus narrows to the iconic red shoes in the context of the decline of the Hollywood studios in the 1960s. No longer able to sustain their expansive collection of costumes, props, and sets in Los Angeles, the studios began selling them off. That era climaxed, sadly, when MGM, the biggest studio of them all, was sold to investor Kirk Kerkorian, who then began selling off the studio’s assets in piecemeal fashion in 1970. More than 40 years later, it’s jaw-dropping to watch footage of those voluminous assets, not just the huge lots for production exteriors and dozens and dozens of vehicles and houses and other buildings, but also thousands and thousand of pieces of furniture, not to mention thousands and thousands of costumes and props. The auction of those assets took weeks to complete, and were epitomized by the sale of Dorothy’s ruby slippers for the princely sum of $15,000. At the time, it was the highest price ever paid for a piece of Hollywood memorabilia, a market that most people didn’t even know existed. The shoes ended up on display at the Library of Congress, enshrined as a museum display, and viewed by thousands. That’s where the official story might have ended. But wait! There’s more.

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