NEWS RELEASE ISSUED BY PITTSBURG MEMORIAL AUDITORIUM:
ClassicKansas tale to feature flying monkeys, whirling cabin and live orchestra
PITTSBURG,Kan. — An age-old Kansas tale is being brought to life in a new way atPittsburg Memorial Auditorium this month.
Thanksto special Flying Effects by ZFX, Inc., Pittsburg Community Theatre'sproduction of "The Wizard of Oz," under the direction of Jason Huffman, willfeature flying monkeys, flying witches, a whirling cabin, a floating hot airballoon and Glinda the Good Witch's "bubble."
Theshow, which will run five performances onstage in Memorial Auditorium, 503 N.Pine, also features a live orchestra for the first time in many years. The castis comprised of more than 70 performers, a number of them members of theMidwest Regional Ballet.
Dancer-actressHannah Wade brings to life central character Dorothy Gale, while fellowdancer-actors Sage Brown, Jared Mazurek and Seth Harley, portray hercompanions: Scarecrow, Tin Woodsman, and Cowardly Lion.
Dorothyis encouraged on her journey by Glinda the Good Witch, played byclassically-trained vocalist and area vocal teacher Lisa Gerstenkorn, who hasperformed with Tulsa Opera and American Opera Studio in Kansas City. Heradversary, the Wicked Witch of the East, is played by veteran PCT performerSusie Lundy.
Fellowveteran PCT performer John Mazurek, playing the role of Oz, hears the requestsof Dorothy and her companions, while his real-life wife, Diann Mazurek, playsthe role of Dorothy's Kansas adversary, Almira Gultch.
LongtimePCT member and theater teacher Joella Reid plays Dorothy's Aunt Em, while JamesRyals plays the dual role of Uncle Henry and the Emerald City Guard. RobertWilson, Tyler Bowling, and Austin VanBecelaere play the farm hands.
Andyes, Toto is being portrayed by a real-life pet dog who belongs to area theaterdirector Greg Shaw.
Complicateddance numbers under the direction of MRB's Kaye Lewis include "Merry Old Landof Oz" and "The Jitterbug," a number not performed in the movie version of thetale. Lewis, of MRB, also plays the cameo role of The Jitterbug using harnessand rigging, and choreographed solo numbers by principal cast members.
Numerouscostume changes for the cast were created by Lisa Quinteros, and noted setdesigner Dan Williams and PCT's Linden Little oversaw the creation of theGale's Kansas farm and the Emerald City. Munchkinland was created byparticipants in PCT's summer Jr. Starz children's theater workshop as part ofset design instruction. Little also serves as lighting designer. Area musicteacher Megan Gabehart serves as musical director and orchestra director, whileher mother, Barbara Davis, a longtime music teacher, serves as rehearsalaccompanist.
Showtimes are 7:30 July 25-27 and 2:00 p.m. on July 27-28. Tickets are $10 foradults, $8 for senior citizens and students and $5 for general admissionbalcony. Tickets may be purchased online at www.memorialauditorium.org,or by calling the box office at 620-231-7827, or at the box office at 503 N.Pine from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
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