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The Wizard of Oz

4
Touring production seen at the Theatre Royal Plymouth.
By Robert Iles - 28th Mar 2024

The Wizard of Oz

Curiously, I don't believe I have ever seen the film all the way through. I have seen all the film, but not in the right order or all on a single occasion! Basically, for some reason I have never warmed to the story so I was looking forward to see if this touring version of the London Palladium production could melt me ...

Well, this is certainly a spectacle with big numbers, great costumes and new arrangements bringing some more modern feel to the songs. The script and performance does wobble a bit between musical and panto but that seems to work most of the time. Most of the visuals are done with projection, these are wonderfully inventive and clever but somehow don't always gel. Thinking about it later I decided it was because I was in the circle - from the stalls the actors would appear to be embedded in the projection as it would be directly behind them, but from where I sat, as the actors came forward they were often seen against the bare stage with the projection separate at the back. It is a perspective thing, at the angle I was seeing it the actors were not always in front of the projection but separate from it and this caused the disconnect.

Did I melt? Not quite but I did enjoy the evening and can't fault the hard working cast, band and tech crew - all of whom gave maximum effort to making the production the show it is.

It is wonderful to see a theatre filled to capacity with a mixed age audience ... any show that can do that deserves our support and this one certainly ticks all the right boxes for a family night out.


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