Theater department prepares ‘Wizard of Oz’


“There’s no place like home. There’s no place like home. There’s no place like home”

-The Wizard of Oz

If you recognized this quote and pictured the iconic scene of Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz clicking her heels in her red ruby slippers, then you will be pleased to find out the Wizard of Oz is coming to Holy Family this winter. Students, under the direction of Mr. Olson, are bringing the classic production to Holy Family.

In 1939, the Hollywood musical Wizard of Oz, based on the 1900 novel Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum, opened and was a huge success. The well-known line spoken by Judy Garland on screen, “Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore…” helped launch this movie, turning it into one of the classic productions of American theatre.

When asked the reason for choosing to put on The Wizard of Oz this year, Mr. Olson commented, “This was the first musical I saw as a kid. It has such an imaginative story and recognizable songs so I think it will connect the audience to their childhood memories.” Olson’s vision for the play is to stay as true as possible to the story: “There is an expectation that goes along with a story like this one, and too many changes would take away the magic.”

With every play production, there are some challenges. The audience can expect difficult choreography along with complex musical numbers sung by the chorus.

“There are a lot of talented students, but the most challenging part is getting everyone to learn the dances,” Olson added.

When asked what else the cast is working on, senior member Mia Warmka said, “The most challenging part right now for the whole cast is definitely piecing together the dialogue and music with the blocking and choreography. Once we have that down and our costumes and set finished, it’s going to be an amazing show!”

In addition to Holy Family students, there are also many fourth through eighth graders playing munchkins and flying monkeys. Looking toward the future of the program, Mr. Olson hopes to build the theater program through allowing as many students who wish to be in the play participate.

The cast for this play pulls students from all grades. Director Allie Phillips stated, “It’s really great to see everyone working together. The show is coming along very nicely because of everyone’s hard work and I can’t wait to see how it turns out.”

Major Cast List:

Dorothy: Marie Fahey

Glinda: Mia Warmka

Scarecrow: Ruthie Farner

Lion: Ben Richards

Oz: Sam Pellicci

Wicked Witch: Gigi Shannon

Tin Man: Emily Sokolis and Eve Breimhorst

Other roles include crows, trees, the people of Oz, munchkins, monkeys, tech support, sound management, set crew and more.

Mr. Olson wishes everyone to know that, “All are welcome to contribute. We can use as much help and collaboration as possible.” He is hoping that this play will establish a theater community within the school and that everyone will come to see the spirit and talent of the actors who have been working hard to produce the show. There are many roles in tech support and set crew to fill so everyone is welcome to come and participate!

Finally, Mr. Olson added, “This play is a chance to set a precedent and build the theater department up. Mrs. Brown has been nothing but supportive, which has helped everything move along very smoothly. I hope everyone will come and enjoy this classic.”

Come to see the Wizard of Oz during one of its three showings: December 8th at 7:00pm, December 9th at 7:00pm and December 10th at 5:00pm.