Newcomer Danielle Wade Wins Role of Dorothy in Toronto Wizard of Oz; Complete Casting Announced
By Kenneth Jones
The cast of the new Canadian production of London's popular The Wizard of Oz, featuring the classic movie score augmented with new songs by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice, will feature Danielle Wade of LaSalle, Ontario, who won the role of Dorothy in CBC-TV's "Over The Rainbow" competition. This is her professional debut.
Producers Bill Kenwright, The Really Useful Group, David Mirvish, Troika Entertainment & Warner Bros. Theatre Ventures announced the all-Canadian cast of the North American premiere of this new stage adaptation on Nov. 13. Performances begin Dec. 20 at the Ed Mirvish Theatre.
Playing opposite Wade (who recently completed her second year in acting at the University of Windsor) is Gemini Award winner, film and theatre veteran, Cedric Smith, as the Wizard.
On the competition series finale, Wade said, "I've never auditioned for anything before. I hope they all go like this."
Lisa Horner, star of Shaw and Stratford productions and best known for her role as Claire in the Fringe hit My Mother's Lesbian Jewish Wiccan Wedding, will play the Wicked Witch. Actor and choreographer Mike Jackson will play the Tin Man. Lee MacDougall (Mamma Mia! and a Dora Award winner for his play High Life) will play the Lion. Jamie McKnight, known for his performance in The Producers (and as one of the Canadian Tenors), will play the Scarecrow. Robin Evan Willis, star of many Shaw Festival productions, will play Glinda.
The ensemble includes Larry Mannell as Uncle Henry, Charlotte Moore as Aunt Em, Jordan Bell, Eric Coles, Sam DiGiuseppe, Chelsey Duplak, John Edwards, Kelly Grainger, Sarah Higgins, Julianne Hobby, Jason Huska, Zak Kearns, Ayrin Mackie, Anthony MacPherson, Stewart Adam McKensy, Julia McLellan, Kristen Pottle, Alana Randall, Adam Sergison, Sarah Slywchuk, Andrew Taylor, Jesse Weafer, Cleopatra Williams, Ryan Wilson and Alyson Workman.
The Wizard of Oz opening night will be Jan. 13, 2013. As in London, Jeremy Sams (The Sound of Music, Broadway's 13, Noises Off) will direct.
The musical is developed from the M-G-M screenplay, and includes "all the beloved songs" by Harold Arlen and Yip Harburg.
The Ed Mirvish Theatre (formerly the Canon) is at 244 Victoria St. in Toronto.
For tickets and information, visit mirvish.com.
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