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North Crawford Playhouse readies to perform Wizard of Oz
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DOROTHY AND THE COWARDLY LION, Bren-nah Ghormley and Gavin Forkash, at left, work through a difficult moment with some of their friends during a rehearsal of the Wizard of Oz at the North Crawford Performance Center on Monday, Oct. 16. It all happens under the watchful eye of veteran North Crawford Playhouse Director Rob Ghormley, lower right. This seasons performance is the fiftieth musical presented by the Playhouse, and will feature some special celebrations. Opening night is Friday, Nov. 3 dont miss this performance!

NORTH CRAWFORD - The North Crawford Playhouse is presenting their 50th musical this fall

The Wizard of Oz will be performed on November 3, 4, 9, 10 and 11 at 7 p.m. There will be matinee performance on Saturday, Nov. 4 at 2:30 p.m.

Tickets are $7 for adults and $5 for students. Seating is limited to 250 nightly, so reserve your tickets early.

For reservations, call high school secretary Lori Foley at 608-735-4311 during school hours.

“The North Crawford Playhouse celebrates our 50th musical season with the greatest of classics, ‘The Wizard of Oz’,” Playhouse Director Rob Ghormley proudly proclaimed. “This should prove to be one exceptional production.” 

Alumni Dinner: For the 50th celebration of musicals, the Playhouse is inviting all theater alumni and their families to a special alumni dinner and brief program at 5 p.m. between the matinee and evening shows on Saturday, Nov. 4 The cost of the meal is $5.  

Poster Series: For the fiftieth anniversary of musicals a beautiful new Playhouse Poster Gallery has been created, with a photo of each of the 70 musicals and plays produced from 1965 to the present. The Playhouse is still searching for photos of productions before 1995. Anyone who has musical photos from 1965 to 1994 is asked to notify Mr. Ghormley as soon as possible at

Technical Challenge:  For the 50th, the Playhouse is preparing to make this the most technically complex production of all. Holy buckets, this play is nuts! It calls for a host of near impossible effects for live theater: flying monkeys, a hot air balloon launch, the Wizard’s floating head, setting the scarecrow on fire, even a tornado on stage, for heavens sake! Technically complex, yes. And the Playhouse  are doing theirs in Steam Punk!

Classic Theater:  Audiences will appreciate that the story follows the classic movie plot with only a few variations.  There is a brilliant new cast of 50 with many new faces in larger roles this year. You know the tale: Young Dorothy Gale (Brennah Ghormley) and her little dog Toto (Lindsey Groom) attempt to run away from the evil Miss Gulch (Morgan Eitsert), who wants to kill Toto.  But after a quick crystal ball reading with Professor Marvel (Jasmine File), Dorothy tries to return home to Aunt Em and Uncle Henry (Elaina and Marco Esparza), only to be locked out of the storm cellar just as a tornado strikes her house. Thanks a lot, Aunt Em! 

The tornado carries Dorothy and Toto to the Merry Old Land of Oz…which is actually a lot more scary than merry. Once there in Munchkin Land, she meets Glinda, the “Good” Witch (Rachel Peterson), who gets Dorothy into a world of trouble by saddling her with the Magic Ruby Slippers, for which the Wicked Witch of the West (Kylie Heisz) wants to kill Dorothy…and Toto too! Thanks a lot, Glinda! 

Then, Glinda sends Dorothy on a wild goose chase to seek the Great and Powerful Wizard of Oz (Clayton Herfel) to take her home to Kansas… Just “follow the Yellow Brick Road!” Along the way, Dorothy is first terrified by and then befriended by the Scarecrow (Collin McBride), the Tinman (Martha Bransky) and the Cowardly Lion (Gavin Forkash), each seeking aid from the Wizard of Oz. They pass through many dangers until they reach the Emerald City, where, instead of helping them, the Wizard sends the four companions on a hopeless quest to kill the Wicked Witch of the West. “Oh, you don’t have to find her… she’ll find you!” Thanks a lot, Wizard! 

In the Witch’s realm, things get really bad. The forest gets darker and deeper and so filled with ghosts and guards and flying monkeys that  - oh my gosh! - the smaller children in the audience will cry and climb into their mothers’ laps! 

“As a child, I had nightmares for weeks after watching this story, so be sure to snuggle close,” Ghormley advises. “Perhaps bring a blanket to hide under!  That’s what I’m doing. Be there and be scared!”

Whatever you do, don’t miss the ‘Wizzard of Oz’ at the North Crawford Playhouse this fall.