Hempfield goes all in with 'The Wizard of Oz'
Hempfield Area High School is a big school, and it deserves a big musical, says director Tony Marino.
“The Wizard of Oz” will be just that when it takes over the auditorium stage from April 19 through 21.
There are more than 100 cast members from the high school and the district's middle and elementary schools. The lead roles — Dorothy, Scarecrow, Lion, Tin Man and the good and bad witches — are double cast.
An orchestra will provide music.
“Everyone loves the movie and our goal is to bring the movie to life,” Marino says. “We're going to hew as close to the cinematic experience as possible.”
Along with onstage scenery, additional scenes will be projected on the back of the stage to create what Marino calls a 3-D effect.
The opening Kansas scenes will be staged in black and white.
Once Dorothy lands in Oz, the scenery will switch to color.
“ZFX (Flying Effects) will bring in a flying rig — we'll have a fair number of people flying,” Marino says.
“It's such a timeless story and everyone knows it, so audiences expect high standards,” says senior Elijah Gilbert, who is cast as one of the Scarecrows.
Choreography is by Marino's wife (and partner in Greensburg's Stage Right theater company) Renata Marino. Music director is Chris McAllister and pit director is Michael Matteo.
“The Wizard of Oz” will be performed at 7 p.m. April 19-21 and 1 p.m. April 21. $15, $10 for students.
Shirley McMarlin is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at 724-836-5750, email@example.com or via Twitter @shirley_trib.