If the first notes of Somewhere Over the Rainbow take you instantly to a little farm in Kansas, you’re not alone. The L. Frank Baum’s classic The Wizard of Oz hit the big screen seventy-five years ago, creating an American staple that ranks consistently among the Top 10 Movies of All Time in the fantasy category.
This spring, Allendale High School is grabbing some of that magic in its own rendition of this timeless musical. With a script nearly identical to that of the big screen (with the exception of one extra song), the students promise that lovers of this timeless story will be equally spellbound by their fresh take on an old performance.
Those playing the lead roles, Allison Taylor as Dorothy, Aubri Carrell as the Cowardly Lion, Jamie Mashue as the Tinman, and Jacob VanNeuren as the Scarecrow (pictured above during dress rehearsal) say they are looking forward to the challenge of singing and dancing later this week.
For Allison, this opportunity represents a full-circle moment. She explains, “I love this story — I was Dorothy four years in a row when I was little and was a munchkin in this same production the last time Allendale performed it. So for me, playing Dorothy and getting to sing these songs is truly a dream come true.” Allison is a sophomore planning to study musical theater this summer at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp.
Aubri noted that all four of the leads are also in Chamber Choir together and enjoy many of the same things. However, all of them agree that the dancing component of this story has been a bit of a hurdle.
“Dancing is something that’s not in any of our backgrounds — we just didn’t know anything about it, so learning to dance while we sing has been a challenge. We’re starting to get the hang of it, though,” said both Jamie and Jacob.
Aubri, a junior playing the Cowardly Lion, bubbled over when discussing her involvement. “I’ve done lots of plays in my life, but this is different — this is having a lead role in a musical! And what makes it more fun is that we’re all really good friends outside of this, so it’s a fun way to make more memories together.”
If you would like to come out and support these young thespians, mark your calendars for one of these performances:
Thursday, March 27 – 7:00 pm
Friday, March 28 – 7:00 pm
Saturday, March 29 – 7:00 pm
Tickets – $7 Adults :: $6 Student :: $3 children 5 and under