Worley to Join L.A. Wicked Cast; Levy to Succeed Espinosa

By Andrew Gans
18 Dec 2007

JoAnne Worley
JoAnne Worley

The Los Angeles company of Wicked at the Pantages Theatre will welcome a new Madame Morrible Jan. 9, 2008, when JoAnne Worley — recently seen on Broadway in The Drowsy Chaperone — succeeds stage and screen actress Carol Kane.

The L.A. cast of the hit Stephen Schwartz-Winnie Holzman musical will also undergo a few other cast changes: Caissie Levy will step into the role of Elphaba, and Michael Drolet will begin his run as Boq Jan. 1. Eden Espinosa, who has played the role of Elphaba on Broadway and in Los Angeles, will play her final performance Dec. 30.

Levy, who will become the latest actress to play the green-faced, not-so-wicked witch, has been seen on Broadway in Hairspray and in the national tours of Hairspray and Rent. She is currently the Elphaba standby in Los Angeles.

The cast also currently features Megan Hilty as Glinda, John Rubinstein as The Wizard, Kristoffer Cusick as Fiyero, Marcie Dodd as Nessarose, Adam Wylie as Boq and Timothy Britten Parker as Doctor Dillamond.



JoAnne Worley has appeared on Broadway in The Drowsy Chaperone; The Billy Barnes People; Hello, Dolly!; Prince of Central Park; and Grease! Among her numerous screen credits are "Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In," "Hot Dog," "The Feminist and the Fuzz," "What's a Nice Girl Like You?," "The Shaggy D.A.," "The Mouseketeers at Walt Disney World," "The Gift of the Magi," "Nutcracker Fantasy," "Don't Miss the Boat," "Through the Magic Pyramid," "Love Boat" and "The Wuzzles." She has also toured in numerous musicals throughout the country.

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 features a score by Stephen Schwartz and a book by Winnie Holzman. Joe Mantello directs.

Tickets for the L.A. Wicked are available by calling (213) 365-3500, by visiting the Pantages Theatre box office (6233 Hollywood Boulevard) or by logging on to www.ticketmaster.com.

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Wicked continues to play Broadway's Gershwin Theatre. For more information visit www.wickedthemusical.com.