Oz in the News 4.30.16

16037-0The Woodsman, Inspired by L. Frank Baum, Sets Off-Broadway Closing Date  The Woodsman, a retelling of the origins of Oz’s Tin Woodsman, will end its latest off-Broadway engagement on May 29. Directed by James Ortiz and Claire Karpen, the production began performances on January 27 and officially opened on February 7 at New World Stages—Stage 5. Reprising their roles from previous 59E59 productions are Benjamin Bass, Devin Dunne Cannon, Will Gallacher, Alex J. Gould, Amanda A. Lederer, Aaron McDaniel, Lauren Nordvig, Oritz, Eliza Simpson, Meghan St. Thomas and Sophia Zukoski. Penned by Ortiz with music composed by Edward W. Hardy and lyrics by Jen Loring, the production is based on the beloved writings of L. Frank Baum. The Woodsman tells the origin story of the Tin Woodsman, the woman he loved, and the witch that would stop at nothing to keep them apart. The Land of Oz is brought to life by Strangemen & Co. with puppetry and original music.

US academic tells of Wizard of Oz legacy  A renowned psychologist and great-granddaughter of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz author L Frank Baum has told of her “delightful” visit to Carrickfergus. San Diego native Dr Gita Morena led a unique two-day workshop along with an evening seminar on the ‘Wisdom of Oz’ in Belfast over the weekend. The legacy of Oz was prevalent throughout Gita’s childhood. “I was always aware of it,” she said. “My mother used to read the stories to me when I was little and as I was called Dorothy then, I thought they were about me.” The Oz tales originally began as bedtime stories Gita’s great grandfather would tells his four sons, growing to a saga that all the neighbourhood children were enthralled by. “Everyone loves the story; it’s so universal and it’s very positive, because she does actually get back home again,” she added. In later years, Gita was encouraged by her colleagues to explore some of the real-life lessons implicit in the Oz stories, eventually writing her dissertation on the topic. Her book, The Wisdom of Oz, was released in 2000.

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