We’re off to see the wizard…

…the wonderful Wizard of Oz. Okay, actually we’ve already been.  On Tuesday I went to see the Wizard of Oz at the Mayflower Theatre in Southampton.  It is a musical production based on the children’s novel, and starred Russ Abbot, Gregor Fisher, Matthew Kelly and Gary Wilmot.

After being caught in a tornado, Dorothy and her dog Toto end up in the land of the munchkins.  Their house kills off the evil Witch of the East and they meet up with the good Witch of the North who tells them to go Emerald City to see the Wizard of Oz.  And so they go on a journey along the yellow brick road to find the Wizard of Oz.  Dorothy believes the wizard can help her to return home to Kansas.  Along the way, she meets up with a scarecrow, who is need of a brain, a tin man, who needs a heart, and a cowardly lion, who needs courage.  They join her on her route to Oz.  When they arrive the wizard tells them that they must kill the wicked Witch of the West before he will help.  Dorothy and her companions manage to kill the witch and return to the Emerald City.  The wizard then manages to help Dorothy’s companions to realise what they had all along.  He offers to help take Dorothy home in a hot air balloon but ends up leaving without her.  Lucikly the good Witch of the North shows Dorothy a way to get home to Kansas, where she is reunited with her family.

The musical is really nicely done, and brought back some memories from my childhood – especially the famous ‘Follow the Yellow Brick Road’ and ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’ songs.  It was obviously aimed at families, although I felt that a couple of parts were quite loud, dark and scary for the very young.

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