Chicago Wicked Company to Present No Place Like Home Benefit

News   Chicago Wicked Company to Present No Place Like Home Benefit The company of the sit-down production of Wicked at Chicago's Ford Center for the Performing Arts have organized a benefit evening to raise funds for Habitat for Humanity/Operation Home Delivery, which will aid the recently displaced hurricane victims around the country.

The Nov. 14 evening, entitled There's No Place Like Home, will be held at Chicago's Park West Theatre. Wicked cast members will perform a mix of songs and dances, ranging from hip hop to Broadway favorites. Show time is 7 PM.

About the upcoming event Wicked cast member Kristy Cates said, "This is a rare opportunity for Wicked fans to not only support a worthy cause but also see cast members step out from the normal roles we usually portray every night onstage." The evening will also include a live and silent auction. Among the items up for bid: "Defying Gravity" sheet music signed by composer Stephen Schwartz; "Wicked" and "Son of a Witch" novels signed by author Gregory Maguire; and a flying monkey mask from the musical.

Chicago's Park West Theatre is located at 322 West Armitage Avenue. Tickets for the benefit range from $30-$50 and are available by calling (312) 559-1212 or by visiting www.ticketmaster.com (VIP tickets, priced at $125, also include an after-party with the cast.)

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The Chicago production of Wicked stars Ana Gasteyer as Elphaba, Kate Reinders as Glinda, Rondi Reed as Madame Morrible, Gene Weygandt as The Wizard, Kristoffer Cusick as Fiyero, Heidi Kettenring as Nessa Rose, Telly Leung as Boq and Steven Skybell as Dillamond. The ensemble comprises Christina Bailey, Dioni M. Collins, Jason Davies, Courtney Corey, Delandis, Jeff Dumas, Peter Ermides, Sarah Jane Everman, Kristina Fernandez, Adam Fleming, Sara Ford, Jay Gamlin, Jacqui Graziano, Colleen Hieber, Mahi Kekumu, Barrett Martin, Vanessa McMahan, Don Richard, Rozlyn Roberson, Ashley Ronbinson, Kathy Santen, Ryan Silverman and Ryan Weiss. Based on Gregory Maguire's novel, which turned every Oz myth inside out, Wicked explores the early life of the witches of Oz: Glinda and Elphaba. The two main characters meet at Shiz, a school where both hope to take up sorcery. Glinda is madly popular and Elphaba is, well, green. By a misunderstanding, they wind up roommates and, after an initial period of mutual loathing, begin to learn something about each other. Their life paths continue to intersect through a shared love, entry into the Emerald City and interaction with the Wizard himself. Eventually, their choices and convictions take them on widely different paths.

Wicked, with a score by Stephen Schwartz and a book by Winnie Holzman, began previews on Broadway Oct. 8, 2003, with an official opening Oct. 30, 2003. Joe Mantello, who directed the Broadway company, repeated his duties for the Chicago production. The creative team also features Eugene Lee (set design), Susan Hilferty (costume design), Kenneth Posner (lighting design), Tony Meola (sound design) and Stephen Oremus (musical director).

Chicago's Ford Center for the Performing Arts/Oriental Theatre is located at 24 West Randolph Street. Tickets for Wicked are available at all Broadway in Chicago box offices (22 W. Monroe Street, 24 W. Randolph Street and 151 West Randolph Street) or by calling (312) 902-1400.

For more information about Wicked visit www.wickedthemusical.com.

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