Tuesday, 30 September 2008

We're off to see the Wizard...

Well it may be a dreary rainy day but our lunch break was full of glitz and glamour as we went to the Theatre Royal Brighton for a sneak preview of their fabulous Christmas musical The Wizard of Oz.

Brighton is breaking with tradition by having a musical instead of a pantomime and I for one am delighted, as personally I have never been a fan of pantos, what with all the 'it's behind you' nonsense and the Butlins-esque audience participation element either.

This afternoon we were treated to a couple of songs followed by a Q&A session with Tim Flavin who is acting, directing and choreographing the show, and at one point he did stray into a slight rant about the current state of celebrity, as when he first started thirty years ago if you wanted to be a musical theatre star you had to undergo years of training and then several years gaining experience in order to work your way up to the best parts, however nowadays he is losing roles to people because they have appeared in the Big Brother house or some other drivel. When you think about it is ludicrous, in what other profession would you get away with hiring someone with no qualifications, just because they have been on telly.

So you will be pleased to hear there are no reality tv stars or other non-entities in this production only people who are actually qualified to do the job, including a lot of local talent in particular Bruce Montague who is probably best known as Leonard from Butterflies (although personally speaking Russel was my favourite) will be appearing as the Wizard, there will also be lots of special effects so you'll still get to see the twister, a witch melting before your eyes and of course the flying monkeys!

Although while this is a professional cast there is space for one enthusiastic amateur within the ensemble, as Toto will be played by a real dog and they will be holding open auditions at the Theatre Royal Brighton on Saturday 11th October from 10 - 12pm, although there are some restrictions as it will need to be a smallish dog who can fit into Dorothy's basket so apologies to anyone with a St Bernard seeking fame! The play closely follows the plot and style of the film so they would be keen to find a dog similar to that one, and obviously one that doesn't mind being picked up by people, so if you think your little pooch could be a star then bring them along.

So if you want a Christmas outing with a difference then come to Brighton, although be quick as tickets are selling fast, in fact some shows have already sold out, so be sure to get yours soon. Tickets can either be booked online, by phone or in person at the Theatre Royal Brighton


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