Don’t judge me, but I never liked The Wizard of Oz as a kid.
The storm, the munchkins, the witches, they all frightened me. I refused to watch the film again until about a year ago, and it still made me feel … uncomfortable.
So I was a little apprehensive going along to the opening night of WICKED.
I shouldn’t have been – it was fabulous!
I took my 10-year-old daughter with me – a huge fan of The Wizard of Oz – and she was thrilled from the moment her shiny shoes touched the green carpet leading into Melbourne’s iconic Regent Theatre. And she sat on the edge of her seat, spellbound, for the entire three-hour spectacle.
We arrived a little early and managed to catch glimpses of a few celebrities gracing the green carpet – Rachel Griffiths and her kids, Natalie Bassingthwaighte, Chrissie Swann, and Eddie Perfect. Sitting in the front row with us were Celia Ireland and Katrina Milosevic of Wentworth fame, and behind us, Melanie Vallejo from Winners and Losers.
For those not in the know, WICKED tells the “untold” story of the witches from The Wizard of Oz, Elphaba, who becomes known as the Wicked Witch of the West (Jemma Rix), and Galinda, who grows up to become Glinda the Good (Lucy Durack).
It fills in the gaps of The Wizard of Oz very well – revealing not only secrets about the two witches, but also how the Lion, the Scarecrow and the Tin Man all come to be, and how Dorothy ended up in Oz in the first place.
All in all it was a fantastic night out – not just for the complimentary champagne and celeb- spotting, but as a lovely way to reconnect with the magic of childhood.
I recommend WICKED for children and adults. The 10th Anniversary Australian tour begins at the Regent Theatre in Melbourne for a limited season, then moves to Sydney’s Capitol Theatre from September 20 and Brisbane’s Lyric Theatre from February 15, 2015.
– written by Rachel Fazio
Rachel attended WICKED as a guest of the production.
For more information visit wickedthemusical.com.au
Image credit: Jeff Busby