Need something to listen to? Caroline, or Change’s N’Kenge recommends the original Broadway cast recording of The Wiz.
The Wiz, Charlie Smalls’ musical adaption of The Wizard of Oz, opened at the Majestic Theatre January 5, 1975. The show ran 1,672 performances and won the Tony Award for Best Musical before closing January 28, 1979.
The Wiz follows Kansas farm girl Dorothy who works to find her way home after being transported in a tornado to a magical land. The production featured music and lyrics by Smalls and book by William F. Brown.
Look Back at The Wiz on Broadway
The original production starred Stephanie Mills as Dorothy, and featured Tiger Haynes, Hinton Battle, Ted Ross, Andre de Shields, and Dee Dee Bridgewater in supporting roles. The show was revived in 1984 starring Stephanie Mills as Dorothy once more.
Directed by Geoffrey Holder with choreography by George Faison, The Wiz feaured scenic design by Tom H. John, lighting design by Tharon Musser, and sound design by Richard J.C. Miller.
In 2015 The Wiz Live! joined NBC's series of live musical events starring Uzo Aduba as Glinda the good witch, Queen Latifah as the Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Stephanie Mills as Aunt Em, Mary J. Blige as Evillene, David Alan Grier as The Cowardly Lion, Amber Riley as Addaperle, Ne-Yo as the Tin Man, Elijah Kelley as the Scarecrow, Common as Bouncer, and 18-year-old newcomer Shanice Williams as Dorothy.