The world premiere of my most recent play “The Wacky Wizard of Oz” drew a full house at Green Mountain High School’s auditorium on Friday, Nov. 22. The audiences for the DDRC Players’ productions are wonderfully responsive, and they seemed to thoroughly enjoy the production, laughing, clapping and cheering throughout.
Based on the L. Frank Baum classic, this particular version is WACKY, and the laughter was nearly non-stop. It was particularly gratifying that the cast was able to deliver a whole litany of puns, gags and banter, along with the more physical slapstick comedy. The cast, drawn from the Developmental Disabilities Resource Center’s clients, gave it their all, and the audience showed tremendous appreciation.
“The Wacky Wizard of Oz” is the first script I have written specifically for this group (my third time as director), and I went into it knowing that some in the cast would be highly verbal, others could deliver lines with onstage prompting, and still others express themselves best through gestures, expressions, and in some cases, speaking devices. My co-director (and wife) Abby and I put a lot of attention into casting the show, and it paid off.
All theater is a team effort, but “The Wacky Wizard of Oz” ensemble was also supplemented by numerous onstage and backstage helpers. We couldn’t have pulled it off without their tremendous energy and devotion.
Backstage assistance was also essential, and in my opinion, the imaginative costumes, gathered and built by Leah Nixon and others, made the show particularly vibrant and alive.
Here’s a link to the FRONT PAGE article that appeared in the Lakewood Sentinel:
Even before the show opened, the cast was asking me “What are we going to do next year?” This tells me that it has been a positive experience for them as well. I don’t know yet what we’re going to do next year. All I know for sure is that it’s going to be FUN!