"The Wiz" is coming

Posted: Tuesday, February 11, 2003

Once again it's show time for the Kenai Performers as they present "The Wiz" that razzle-dazzle odyssey to Oz, opening February 14th, Valentines evening at the Renee C. Henderson Auditorium at Kenai Central High School.

The Wiz is an adaptation of the famous motion picture "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" starring Judy Garland, but the familiar songs of the motion picture were left somewhere over the rainbow when the story line was adapted to the Broadway stage for Michael Jackson and Diana Ross, legends of the Motown sound.

"It was written with all its own music and none of the songs Judy Garland sang, they are all new, jazzy and very cool. We have so many surprises in this show for everybody from what people look like, to the amazing things that happen, it's fantastic, and I mean by that this show is a dreamy fantasy from just after the beginning to the end, full of special effects, fly away sets, and great dance numbers, but Dorothy is her same sweet Kansas self that everyone remembers, " said Director Carol Ford.


7-year-old Courtney Stroh as the young Dorothy with Toto, on the set of "The Wiz" opening Friday night at KCHS

Many of the other characters that assist Dorothy and Toto on their journey along the yellow brick road are as familiar as Oz itself, from the Witch sisters of the north, south, and west, to the Scarecrow, Tin man, courage-less Lion and Munchkins, all add up to wonderful family show that promises sell-out performances. The community cast of over 60 with nearly 40 backstage assistants has been having way too much fun with the show, says Carol Ford. Tony Zilka, Brad Phillips, and Pat Lytle have created sets, with costumes by Sharon Wik, Jodene and Doug McAuliffe.

The Kenai Performers traditional opening night gala premier will offer an on stage, meet the cast,

after the show experience with gourmet treats for everyone in the audience. Performances are scheduled for February 14th & 15th, as well as February 20th -23rd, "We're not having a matinee that first Sunday because many of our dancers who are fantastic, this is a real dancing show, will be in a dance competition in Anchorage, but we'll still have seven shows, we're just going to double up on the following weekend," explained Ford. Advance tickets are available at Merit Inn, Halcyon Spalon, Coffee Roasters, The Music Box, Alaskan Gift & Gallery, River City Books, Sweeny's Clothing, and Charlotte's.

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