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RiverCenter presents ‘The Wizard of Oz’

The RiverCenter for the Performing is presenting “The Wizard of Oz” on Tuesday and Wednesday.
The RiverCenter for the Performing is presenting “The Wizard of Oz” on Tuesday and Wednesday.

There will be no place like the RiverCenter on Tuesday and Wednesday, as they welcome the national tour of “The Wizard of Oz.”

Based on the book by L. Frank Baum, “The Wizard of Oz” is renowned as one of the greatest musicals of all time. The national tour is a celebration of the iconic 1939 MGM movie, tracking with the famous film almost scene for scene, and presented with breathtaking special effects.

The tour features all of the film’s characters — Dorothy, Toto, the Scarecrow, Tin Man, the Cowardly Lion and, of course, Glinda the Good Witch and the famously green Wicked Witch of the West.

From the moment the tornado touches down, the audience is transported over the rainbow to a dazzling land of Oz, complete with munchkins and flying monkeys.

The show features some of the most beloved music from composer Harold Arlen, including “Over the Rainbow,” the song made famous by Judy Garland, “Ding Dong the Witch is Dead,” “If I Only Had A Brain,” “We’re Off To See The Wizard,” The Merry Old Land of Oz” and “If I Were King of the Forest.”

“I haven’t met a person who doesn’t know something about The Wizard of Oz, whether it’s from the book, the film or the many spin-offs from this endearing tale of hope and discovery,” said Norman Easterbrook, RiverCenter executive director. “So often this tale is thought of as only a story for children, but with this production, classic in every way, it is a full length theatrical production with dazzling spectacle in the sets, costumes and special effects. The production features talented actors and musicians of national stature and prominence for a full evening of world-class entertainment.”

“Our community continues to reap the rewards of RiverCenter’s ability to present productions that usually can only be seen in communities much larger than Columbus,” Easterbrook said. “We invite everyone to join us to escape for a while to a world and an adventure limited only by your imagination. We agree that there is no place like home and for two nights only – that home is at RiverCenter.”

Performances are Tuesday and Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. Pre-show dinners are available on both evenings and, at 6:40 p.m. on Tuesday, there will be a special pre-show lecture about the film by Jordan Beck, COO of Fun Academy Motion Pictures and voice actor for the animated feature film Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero.

Tickets are now on sale at the RiverCenter box office, 900 Broadway. Hours are Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m. Tickets are also available by phone at 706-256-3612 and online at rivercenter.org.

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