With just a month to go, the cast of The Wizard of Oz are preparing to bring the spectacular tale of the magical land of Oz to Leeds Playhouse from 20 November 2019 until 25 January 2020.
These images give a first glimpse of the tremendous trio of Tin Man, Scarecrow and Lion as they escort Dorothy and Toto through the poppy fields of Oz, ducking and diving from the terrifying Wicked Witch of the West, played by Polly Lister (The Worst Witch Live, Nimax/Northampton Theatre Royal/Kenny Wax/ Novel, Theresa Heskins; Boeing Boeing & Private Lives for Harrogate Rep).
When venturing into the land of Oz, Toto, Dorothy’s tiny but tenacious four-legged friend, will be magically brought to life by puppeteer Ailsa Dalling, under the direction of Rachel Leonard. Designed and created by Puppet Maker Charlie Tymms (Life of Pi, Sheffield Theatres, Running Wild, UK tour), Toto has been crafted using a plywood skeleton with elastic hinge joints with a jaunty outer-layer of dyed hessian and 1930s-style patterned fabric to create that furry exterior.
In this timeless story of adventure and friendship, young Dorothy and her little dog Toto are caught in a cyclone and whisked away to the magical Land of Oz in a technicolour production directed by James Brining (Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Sunshine on Leith Leeds Playhouse) and designed by Simon Higlett (Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Leeds Playhouse).
The Wizard of Oz will play in Leeds Playhouse’s Quarry Theatre, which reopens this Christmas following the building’s dramatic £15.8m redevelopment. Audiences now enjoy improved access into and around the building, contemporary seating in the Quarry, new hospitality areas and a dramatic new city-facing entrance opposite Leeds City Bus Station.
The theatre will host a sing-along performance of The Wizard of Oz on Friday 13 December, inviting the audience to dress up, sing out and join in the fun. Relaxed and Dementia Friendly performances will also be available, and there will be a selection of bespoke wrap-around and in–school activities led by the Playhouse’s award-winning Creative Engagement team.
The Wizard of Oz, Leeds Playhouse’s Quarry Theatre
20 November 2019 – 25 January 2020. Press Night Tue 26 November 2019, 7pm
Box office 0113 213 7700. Book online leedsplayhouse.org.uk