Oz in the News 6.22.16

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Interview: Rachel Womble of THE WIZARD OF OZ  “I think for a lot of my colleagues the comparison to the movie characters has been a challenge. However, I think for Glinda, Billie Burke just wasn’t featured that much. Of course she was there, and she played an integral part, but she didn’t have those really distinct moments that some of the other characters had. I think the audience was open to whatever spin I put on her. So I felt the freedom to create her, and give her some extra pizzazz! It was definitely informed though by what I imagine might have been included if she had had more screen time!”

A dream start to a long career on the stage for Colchester’s Rob Gathercole  It’s every drama student’s dream. To leave college and immediately get your first job touring the country performing in some of the most beautiful places the UK has to offer. But Elmstead Market actor and musician Rob Gathercole has gone one better because not only has he scooped a part on a new production of the Wizard of Oz, he’s also written the music for it. “We started a few months ago with James Tobias writing the lyrics and me writing the music, and it was while we were doing that James put up the casting call for the show itself and I wondered whether there might be a part in the show for me. The 28-date tour starts next month and will take the troupe all over the country to such picturesque venues as Blenheim Palace and Leeds Castle. Based on the original book rather than the Hollywood film, appearing alongside Rob will be Rachel Stratton will play Dorothy, having previously starred in international tours of Shrek the Musical as well as the West End production of Rainbow Magic Live. and Matthew Forbes who plays the Scarecrow, straight from his role as associate director of puppetry and movement on the National Theatre’s worldwide smash hit War Horse. For more information go to the theatre company’s website at http://www.immersiontheatre.co.uk

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