Over The Rainbow

unnamed-11It's been 79 years since the American Musical fantasy ‘The Wizard of Oz' hit the silver screen. In 1939 the adaptation of L. Frank Baum's 1900 children's book The Wonderful Wizard of Oz took the cinema world by storm by following the yellow brick road by using Technicolor, fantasy storytelling, musical score, and memorable characters. Baum wrote a total of 14 novels in the Oz series.

There’s no place like home for the holidays; especially when it is filled with the magic of the iconic, memorable movie which is now playing at The Paramount Theatre through January 6, 2019. Acclaimed Director Amber Mak takes you ‘Over The Rainbow’ into another fantastical world with The Wizard of Oz, as you've never seen it before with a stellar cast, dazzling scenic designs, and outstanding choreography.

Kids around the world remember the story of Dorothy Gale, the girl that was stuck on a Kansas farm with her aunt (Harriet Nzinga Plumpp), uncle and her beloved dog ‘Toto (who was totally adorable even when he yearned on stage) longing for a better and exciting life. When a tornado hits, Dorothy has whisked away to the magnificent world of Oz. An incredible place, full of munchkins, a living scarecrow, a tin man without a heart, a cowardly lion, and the mean and powerful, Wicked Witch of the West; who swears revenge on Dorothy for her sister's death!

unnamed-1In her Paramount debut rising Chicago theater star, Elizabeth Stenholt plays Dorothy and takes us on a journey to Emerald City where dreams and courage walk hand in hand down the yellow brick road. Elizabeth performance was outstanding as Dorothy. She has a spot on resemblance of Judy Garland-starring in the coveted role donning the red ruby slippers. It was also very refreshing to see a new face so thrilled to be on stage and almost in tears when the audience gave her a standing ovation.

Accompanying Stenholt to see the Wizard is a trio of loveable characters Kyle Adams (Scarecrow), Carl Draper (Tinman) and Paul-Jordan Jansen (Cowardly Lion) all the while dodging the harassment from the wicked witch (Caron Buinis) and her winged monkeys to the Emerald City.

All of the performances were great and very entertaining with some scary moments for the kids, but we must say we could have done without the wicked witch from the west acting sexy throughout the musical.

We don't remember hearing the iconic witch ghoulish laughter or evil squeal. Drop sexy and bring back to the wicked witch.

'The Wizard of Oz’ is a great way to kick off the holiday season with some memorable songs such as ‘"Follow the Yellow Brick Road,” We’re Off to See the Wizard," "Over the Rainbow," "Ding-Dong! The Witch Is Dead," and "If I  Only Had a Brain;" it's an awesome experience of musical theater extravaganza!  

unnamed-14Director Amber Mak does another exceptional job bringing to life this historical performance. Mak, a respected Chicago based director, is also known for her critically-acclaimed directed and choreographed Paramount Theatre's production of Hairspray - The Musical and was the director, and associate choreographer of Paramount's 2014 smash hit Mary Poppins.  

It's a nice haul to Aurora, but this play is definitely worth the trip. ‘The Wizard of Oz' will surely warm your hearts from the ruby red slippers, and the adorable Toto all the way to Emerald City.

Remember, my pretties, this musical can teach you some timeless life lessons on brains, courage, heart, and feeling appreciated, and you could learn from Dorothy's journey if you follow the yellow brick road!

Let's Play ‘Highly Recommends' The Wizard of Oz.

The cast includes:

Elizabeth Stenholt (Dorothy)

Kyle Adams (Scarecrow/Hunk)

Carl Draper (Tinman/Hickory)

Paul-Jordan Jansen (Cowardly Lion/Zek)

Caron Buinis (Wicked Witch of the West/Almira Gulch)

Harriet Nzinga Plumpp (Glinda the Good Witch/ Aunt Em)

Gene Weygandt ( Wizard of Oz/Professor Marvel) 

Nessa and Nigel (Toto)  Dorothy’s adorable dog will be double cast with two wee Cairn Terriers, Nessa, and Nigel, both rescue dogs, professionally trained for the stage by William Berloni Theatrical Animals.

Paramount Theatre Presents

The Wizard of Oz

Directed by Acclaimed Chicago Director Amber Mak 




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