On November 8-10, 15-17, 2013, at 7:30 pm at Northwest High School’s Puffenberger Auditorium, 8580 Erie Avenue NW, Canal Fulton, Ohio, the Canal Fulton Players in conjunction with Northwest Local Schools will present L. Frank Baum’s wonderful classic story, The Wizard of Oz. This play, which is appropriate for all ages, is being directed by Sandra Schmeltzer. Ms. Schmeltzer is a veteran actress and director and was the artistic director for The Music Man, the Player’s musical for 2012. She has recently appeared in Steel Magnolias at the Canton Players Guild.
The play is produced by David Van Gaasbeek, a veteran actor and the founder of the Canal Fulton Players, which is entering its ninth season. Mr. Van Gaasbeek was the one who arranged the play with Northwest Local School’s Superintendent, Dr. Michael Shreffler. This is the first time that the Players have appeared at Puffenberger Auditorium which is part of Northwest High School.
The Wizard of Oz is a story about a young girl who leaves home because she believes that she is misunderstood by her family and friends. Meeting an itinerant carnival person on her journey, the girl is convinced to return home before she is missed by her family and friends. Unfortunately, before she can return home, she is swept away from her home by a powerful tornado which deposits her and her dog in the mystical Land of Oz, which is over the rainbow.
It is there, she attempts the long and arduous journey home, while learning valuable lessons about herself and the friends that she makes on the journey. Aided by three loyal friends, each one having a major problem- no brain, no heart, and no courage- the girl fights a wicked witch, flying monkeys, poppy flowers, jitterbugs, and the witch’s personal soldiers so she can get a personal audience in front of the mysterious Wizard of Oz.
Dorothy Gale, the young girl, is played by Northwest High School graduate Amiee Jarzenski. The Wicked Witch of the West is portrayed by veteran stage actor, Craig May, who recently wrote a play called Dot’s Journey, which was performed on the St. Helena III canal boat as part of the City of Canal Fulton’s Canal Boat tours. The loyal trio- the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodsman, and the Cowardly Lion- is played by Austin Healey Boser, Jeremey Followay, and Cindy Bagocious. Dorothy’s loving aunt and uncle are portrayed by Theresa Graves and Ray Olivera. Glinda, the Good Witch of the North, is portrayed by Christine Gingerich, who last appeared with the Players as Maria Von Trapp in the Sound of Music. The mean spinster who causes Dorothy to run from home, Miss Almira Gulch, is played by Lisa Van Gaasbeek. Geri Marken portrays the hard-nosed but soft hearted guard to Oz. Gary Gallagher plays Professor Chester Marvel and the Wonderful Wizard of Oz.
All songs that were performed in the movie will be presented by the Players during the performances of this play. Included also is the Jitterbug song which was cut from the movie with Judy Garland and Margaret Hamilton due to time restraints. Margie Metcalf, who is the musical director of a nine person pit band, and Anita Artzner, the choreographer, have worked hard preparing the main cast and twenty nine munchkins, flying monkeys, Winkies, trees, flowers, and jitterbugs for detailed musical numbers.
Puffenberger Auditorium is a seven hundred seat, state of the art theatre. All seats will be assigned at purchase of the tickets and there are no first come first serve seats. There are seats for the disabled.
Tickets are $12.00 for adults and $10.00 for seniors (65 +) and children under the age of twelve. Tickets can be purchased by calling 330-854-3639, 330-854-4387, and 330-494-1022; by faxing your request to 330-494-1994; by e-mailing your request to firstname.lastname@example.org; or sending your written request to the Canal Fulton Players, 6604 Canal Lock, Canal Fulton, Ohio 44614. You can call David Van Gaasbeek at 330-494-1022 for special group rates.
The Wizard of Oz is produced by the Tams-Witmark Musical Library Inc., New York, New York. All rights to this play are purchased through Tams-Witmark.
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