Monthly Archives: May 2017

Oz in the News 5.26.17

Sweet Oz! Meet the magical new stars of West End’s Wicked Alice Fearn and Sophie Evans will undertake the leading roles of green witch Elphaba and good witch Glinda – Bradley Jaden will slip into the tight white jodhpurs as Winky prince Fiyero. Melanie La Barrie, Andy Hockley, Jack Lansbury and Laura Pick will play Madame Morrible, The Wizard, Boq and Standby for Elphaba respectively. They join current cast members Martin Ball (Doctor Dillamond), Sarah McNicholas (Nessarose) and Carina Gillespie (Standby for Glinda). They join a full cast of Wicked, including Jennie Abbotts, Ashley Birchall, Nicole Carlisle, Nicholas Corre, Conor Crown, Kerry Enright, Aimée Fisher, Joseph Fletcher, Alexandra Grierson, Katy Hanna, Tom Andrew Hargreaves, Olivia Kate Holding, Claudia Kariuki, Will Lucas, James McHugh, Danny Michaels, Ellie Mitchell, Rosa O’Reilly, Matt Parsons, Alex Pinder, Sam Robinson, Paulo Teixeira, Samantha Thomas, Hannah Toy, Russell Walker, Sasha Wareham and Libby Watts.

Oz in the News 5.25.17

Brooklyn native creates new book series based on ‘The Wizard of Oz’ Gabriel Gale, who was born and raised in Bay Ridge, has immersed himself in the legend and legacy of L. Frank Baum’s “The Wizard of Oz” series of books. Gale, whose pen name is derived from Oz heroine Dorothy Gale, has created the first volume of a planned three-novel prequel to the beloved Baum classic focused on the origin story of Glinda, the Good Witch of the South. Gale has worked on this project for 10 years and calls it “a culmination of a whole lot of passion, research and drive to get an Oz story that is 100 years in the making into this project.” It all started for Gale when he first discovered Baum’s book as a young boy. “I read the Oz books at the 73 Street Bay Ridge branch of the Brooklyn Public Library. I was fascinated from then on. After graduating from Columbia, I decided I wanted to create my own ‘Lord of the Rings’ type of work. And the Oz books returned to mind and I went back and researched them. I met with the family and I met with many of the world’s leading Oz experts, and I put all of that research into ‘Ages of Oz.’”

Oz in the News 5.22.17

THEATRE REVIEW | Judy, The Arts Theatre If you’re already well versed in Garland mania then you’ll love this too. Judy is a potted history of the life of Judy Garland told with wit and warmth from the clever perspective of having three Judy Garlands on stage at different points in her life. The device works well and showcases not only a number of songs but manages to portray both uplifting and funny side of Garland as well as the not so joyous times. There’s a cast of twelve with cast members doubling up as the live band too. Oh and the Judys? They’re pitch perfect and totally on point both in mannerisms and vocal style.

Review of JUDY! at the Arts Theatre London For me personally, Lucy Penrose delivers the Judy I know best. Her tenacity and unwavering determination are ever present, however, in vulnerable moments and as she threatens to break down, it’s hard not see her as Dorothy pleading with the Wizard. Indeed, every mannerism and every inflection are perfect and in these moments it’s almost too easy to believe you’re watching Judy herself. The inevitable and much-anticipated performance of over the rainbow delivers on every level. Involving all three Judys, the stunning vocal arrangement is elegant and true to the original, yet carries a sadness and tenderness that encapsulates the pain and undying aspirations of a woman for whom the fame was almost too much.

17 of the most bafflingly bizarre creatures in the Land of Oz While the Oz-verse extends through volumes and volumes of enchanted realms by several different authors, it was first imagined into being by L. Frank Baum, who envisioned some things that would be impossible to create even in a petri dish. This magical menagerie goes beyond just animals that talk, because in Oz, everything talks. Think inanimate objects that were suddenly animated and highly magnified insect Einsteins. And don’t forget the things that can take off their heads. Crash your house into this dreamlike otherworld and follow the Yellow Brick Road to some stranger-than-strange creatures that can only exist in the land of Oz.

Oz in the News 5.19.17

Getting to Oz Through Austin Arts Summer is the season of travel, of leaving your humdrum, gray existence for somewhere colorful and adventurous. You may be familiar with a wide-eyed young Kansan who set the standard for such getaways with her extreme vacay from the Sunflower State to the Land of Oz. Well, this year, the Zilker Summer Musical will transport audiences to the Emerald City, Munchkinland, and points between with a production of The Wizard of Oz, and we’ve been considering how to get you over the rainbow, so to speak. During the show’s run, July 7-Aug. 12, you could convey yourself to the Hillside by some commonplace motorized contraption such as a car or bus, but hey, where’s the fun in that? And while we’ve nothing against road trips of the automotive variety, we can’t imagine the 1939 film possessing quite the same charm had Judy Garland followed the Yellow Brick Road in a Studebaker Champion. So in the spirit of the story, we’ve mapped our own way for you to go off to see the wizard, with stops at some off-the-beaten-Brick Road artistic projects that incorporate modes of transport in The Wizard of Oz.

This Barnyard Wizard of Oz Wedding Will Make You Want to Click Your Heels 3 Times Just when we thought we’d seen all the themed weddings possible, a Wizard of Oz-inspired shoot blew us away like the story’s tornado. The styled wedding from BeInspired isn’t just your average ode to Dorothy and her friends, either. Monica Relyea Events and a team of fantastic vendors brought the Emerald City to life, and with the utmost elegance at that. On top of a stunning geode cake, decor pieces, and glassware all in green, the shoot was even put together on a farm named Oz. And what’s a Wizard of Oz wedding without red shoes and Toto?

Oz in the news 5.17.17

Discotek Shares Episodes Of “Wizard of Oz” Anime Discotek describes Panmedia‘s version of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz:

Dorothy and her canine pal Toto live a quiet life on a Kansas farm with Uncle Henry and Aunt Em. But one day, the little girl and her dog find themselves spirited away from the fields of Kansas, to the magical land of Oz! Dorothy and Toto meet many friends on the yellow-brick road to Emerald City, where she hopes to find a way home to Kansas– but when she arrives, the city’s mysterious ruler, the Wizard of Oz, is not what she expects! The Wizard can help Dorothy get home, but at a daunting price: she and her friends the Tin Woodsman, the Scarecrow, and the Cowardly Lion must kill the Wicked Witch of the West and free the Winkies from her rule.

Dorothy’s journey to Emerald City is only the beginning of this celebrated 52-episode adaptation of L. Frank Baum‘s beloved series of children’s books, which goes beyond the tale of Wizard of Oz to introduce you to new friends, like the Gump, the Sawhorse, Jack Pumpkinhead, and Billina– plus new adversaries in the witch Mombi, General Jinjur and the All-Girl Army, and the bitter and scheming Nome King. Dorothy must team up with old friends and new to save all of Oz and return Emerald City to its rightful ruler, the mysterious Ozma. One way or another, Dorothy’s not in Kansas anymore! Discotek will release the entire 52-episode series on standard definition Blu-ray Disc and on DVD on August 29. The company is offering the international version of the series with the English dub, including narration by Margot Kidder (Superman). Lightyear Entertainment previously released the series on DVD. The series originally aired in 1986-1987.

Oz in the News 5.15.17

Unknown Stories of WNY: The Man Behind The Wizard Had Ties To Allegany County Years before The Wizard of Oz sprang from L. Frank Baum’s imagination, he was imagining wealth of a different kind. He and his father made their home in the Allegany County town of Richburg. It, like many other Allegany County and Northern Pennsylvania communities, was enjoying instant wealth. Richburg was a small farming hamlet, until 1881 that is. A group of businessmen formed the Richburg Oil Company and bought 90 acres of farm land. On April 27, 1881 a crowd gathered to witness the first shooting of the well. It was a geyser. The well produced 250 barrels in the first hours, then settled in to about 50 barrels a day. That discovery led to a rush on the area. Towns of a few hundred people grew to thousands. Among the many who came here in search of fortunes was Benjamin Baum. He and his son Frank ran a skimming company. As oil wells were struck,much of the product wound up in the creeks. Baum & son went into business skimming and recovering oil from the streams.

3 Series To Take You Back to Oz After ‘Emerald City’ s Cancellation For those of us who enjoy a journey to the Land of Oz, the recent cancellation of NBC’s felt truly wicked. Sure, it wasn’t a perfect season, but what first season is? The unique, adult-oriented take on showed promise and left us anticipating all that would happen in season two, but now we’re left stranded at the end of the rainbow –– or are we? While there is no planned return to Oz on television, we continue to get fresh content through the original Wizard of Oz medium –– literature. Since L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was released 117 years ago, this merry old magical land has been the setting for numerous novels; some of which were released just this year. Thanks to the freedom that comes with Oz being under public domain, authors have the ability to reimagine, recreate, and elaborate on Baum’s creations. Of all the books that have arrived in the wake of Dorothy’s first trip to Oz, three recent titles offer up fresh and exciting new narratives. If you are reeling from the loss of Emerald City, or just looking for a way back to Oz, these series maybe be just what you need.

Oz in the News 5.10.17

Eerie ‘Land of Oz’ theme park in North Carolina finally opening up for tours In 1970, people from around the country flocked to Beech Mountain, North Carolina to check out the new “Land of Oz” theme park. Its popularity was short-lived — the attraction shut down in 1980 after its owner passed away and a fire took down the site’s Emerald City. It hasn’t been left completely abandoned, though. In 1991, the park was opened for one day to curious visitors. And as we’ve previously reported, locals have taken it upon themselves to keep the amusement park in relative working order to open for the annual “Autumn in Oz” event. But this year, as they did last year, they’re opening it up on Fridays in June for visitors to come and enjoy an entirely different kind of Oz. The tours on June 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30 will last for 45–60 minutes, and will introduce visitors to Dorothy as she guides you around her country home on the Yellow Brick Road. During your visit to the Land of Oz, you’ll meet Dorothy and accompany her on a tour of her country home — just before a cyclone whisks you away to the yellow brick road. This massive winding trail reaches all the way around the top of Beech Mountain, and is made of 44,000 actual yellow bricks. Tickets for the scheduled tours are on sale now for $25. For more information on the park and to buy tickets, head to the “Land of Oz” website.