In this popular Broadway musical based on Gregory Maguire’s bestselling novel (a kind of “prequel” to The Wizard of Oz), we learn how Elphaba, a sensitive and misunderstood green-skinned college student in the land of Oz, eventually came to be known as the infamous Wicked Witch of the West.
This Broadway musical spectacle is especially loved by tweens, who can relate to its tale of a different young woman struggling to fit in, but audiences of all ages appreciate the show’s themes about prejudice and friendship, as well as its pop-infused score by Stephen Schwartz (Godspell, Pippin) featuring songs such as the catchy “Popular” and the soaring “Defying Gravity”. If you’re thinking of bringing your pre-tweens along to the theater, bear in mind that, as in The Wizard of Oz itself, there are some scary scenes in this story.
Marc Platt, the producer behind Broadway shows and films (e.g. Legally Blonde on screen, the new Nine movie, the upcoming Broadway revival of Pal Joey), has made it known that he is looking forward to making his Broadway smash Wicked into a feature film. The Wicked movie is still in the very early planning stages, but the Broadway show’s bookwriter, Winnie Holzman, is expected to write the screenplay. Platt is also interested in doing a new film version of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s musical Jesus Christ Superstar.
Broadway and TV regular Kristin Chenoweth, currently playing a featured role on ABC’s Pushing Daisies, is working on her memoirs. The autobiography, in which the Oklahoma girl will talk about how she balances her life, faith, and career, is scheduled to be published by Simon & Schuster in Spring 2009. Chenoweth first made a splash on Broadway in the revival of You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown, later going on to star in the original Broadway company of mega-hit Wicked.
Composer Stephen Schwartz, currently represented on Broadway by the mega-hit Wicked, will soon be honored on the West Coast with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Although Schwartz is well-known by theater fans for his scores to Broadway musicals like Pippin, Rags, Working, and Godspell (which is soon to have a revival on Broadway), he has also been celebrated in the film industry, having won three Oscars for his songwriting work on movies like Disney’s Pocohontas. Schwartz will receive his star on the Walk of Fame on April 8 in a ceremony that will include performances from the L.A. company of Wicked.
Elphaba and Glinda, two characters from the smash Broadway musical Wicked, are being immortalized in the form of Madame Alexander dolls. The release of the 10″ dolls will be marked by the appearance of cast members from the Broadway company of Wicked, along with Alexander Doll Company designers, at FAO Schwarz (5th Avenue at 58th Street) on October 23 at 4:30pm. The Wicked cast will perform, followed by a signing.