Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! This October, the iconic MGM movie The Wizard of Oz comes to life on Asheville Community Theatre’s Mainstage.
Asheville Community Theatre’s production of The Wizard of Oz is directed by Jerry Crouch with music direction by Sarah Fowler. The Wizard of Oz opens Oct. 4 and runs through Oct. 27 with performances Friday and Saturday nights at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday afternoons at 2:30 p.m.
Two additional performances are scheduled for Thursday nights Oct. 17 and Oct. 24 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are available at www.ashevilletheatre.org and 828-254-1320.
The Wizard of Oz is the beloved tale of Dorothy Gale, who is swept away from her Kansas farm by a tornado to the magical land of Oz. To return home, she must travel follow the Yellow Brick Road to seet the mysterious and powerful Wizard. Along the way, she meets three new friends, matches wits against a Wicked Witch, and discovers that she’s always had the power to return home, but just had to learn that for herself. All of the songs from the classic 1939 MGM movie are in the musical, including “Over The Rainbow,” “We’re Off To See The Wizard (Follow The Yellow Brick Road),” and “The Merry Old Land of Oz.” “The Jitterbug,” an additional song that was filmed but cut from the movie, is also included in the musical.
“No matter how many times you’ve seen the movie, there’s something magical about seeing this story performed live right in front of you,” said Susan Harper, Executive Director of Asheville Community Theatre. “We all know and love the music from the movie, but this show also has the right amount of how’d they do that? moments in a live production, from the tornado to the melting witch to the ruby slippers appearing on Dorothy’s feet, that will keep everyone enthralled.”
Asheville Community Theatre’s production stars a cast of 41 from all over Western North Carolina. Dorothy is played by Faith Creech, a 15-year-old sophomore at Mt. Heritage High School in Burnsville. The Wicked Witch of the West is played by Missy Stone, who moved to Weaverville in 2016 with her husband Jeff, who is playing the Wizard. Glinda is played by Ashleigh Phillips of Marion, who is making her ACT debut. Toto is played by Wicket, a sweet little terrier who lives in Haywood County. All of the Munchkins are local school children; the youngest is a kindergartner at Claxton Elementary.
Joining Faith as Dorothy on the Yellow Brick Road are Dillon Giles (Scarecrow), John O’Neil (Cowardly Lion), and Mark Jones (Tin Man). For Opening Weekend, all adult tickets are discounted at $26. Other weekend performances are $30.
For more information about The Wizard of Oz or about Asheville Community Theatre, please visit www.ashevilletheatre.org.