Wicked, with Wicks and Kassebaum, Opens in San Francisco Feb. 6

News   Wicked, with Wicks and Kassebaum, Opens in San Francisco Feb. 6
Wicked, which began life at San Francisco's Curran Theatre, officially returns to the City by the Bay Feb. 6 when the open-ended engagement of the international hit musical opens at the Orpheum Theatre. Previews began Jan. 27.
Teal Wicks in Wicked.
Teal Wicks in Wicked.

The cast of the production is headed by Teal Wicks (L.A. Wicked, national tour of Pippin) and Kendra Kassebaum (Broadway's Wicked, Off-Broadway's The Receptionist) as, respectively, the green-faced, misunderstood Elphaba and the curly-locked Glinda, with Carol Kane as Madame Morrible and David Garrison as The Wizard.

The company also features Nicolas Dromard as Fiyero, Tom Flynn as Dr. Dillamond, Deedee Magno Hall as Nessarose and Eddy Rioseco as Boq with Natalie Daradich as the standby for Glinda and understudy for Nessarose and Vicki Noon as the standby for Elphaba.

The ensemble comprises Kehau Ahu, Keith A. Bearden, Angela Ara Brown, Marcus Choi, Laura Dysarczyk, Fiama Fricano, Alexa Green, D.J. Gregory, Celisse Henderson, Zach Hensler, Holly Hyman, Jeremy Kocal, Allison Leo, Everth Lopez, Kyle McDaniel, Kristen Faith Oei, Laura Pugliese, Angel Reda, Jonathan Ritter, Phillip Spaeth, Terrance Spencer, Eric Stretch, Tim Talman and Neka Zang.

A 30-minute special celebrating the open-ended San Francisco engagement will be broadcast Feb. 8 at 4 PM on San Francisco's ABC/KGO 7. The half-hour program will include "special backstage footage including actor interviews and a detailed look on how the Broadway spectacular came to be. Wicked's creative team, including Academy and Grammy Award-winning composer/lyricist Stephen Schwartz, explains how the best-selling 1995 novel by Gregory Maguire was brought to the Broadway stage."

Several San Francisco landmarks are also currently lit green (through Feb. 6) to honor the return of the musical. Among those buildings are San Francisco City Hall, Coit Tower and the Ferry Building. The War Memorial Veterans Building will be green one day only on Feb. 6. 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, a book by Winnie Holzman, direction by Joe Mantello and musical staging by Wayne Cilento. The creative team also includes scenic design by Eugene Lee, costume design by Susan Hilferty, lighting design by Kenneth Posner, sound design by Tony Meola, projections by Elaine J. McCarthy, wig and hair design by Tom Watson, music supervision and arrangements by Stephen Oremus, orchestrations by William David Brohn and dance arrangements by James Lynn Abbott.

Wicked won 2004 Tony Awards for Best Actress in a Musical (Menzel), Best Costume Design (Susan Hilferty) and Best Scenic Design (Eugene Lee).

Tickets for the San Francisco production of Wicked are now on sale for performances through June 27; visit ticketmaster.com/wicked or call (415) 512-7770. Tickets are also available at the Orpheum Theatre Box Office (1192 Market at 8th Street).

For more information visit www.wickedthemusical.com.

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