The Wizard of Oz is playing at the Tato Laviera Theatre located at 240 East 123rd Street. It runs one hour with no intermission. The musical last performances are on July 30 and August 20, 2017.
For those off you that don’t the story this is a brief summary of the story. No spoilers. Dorothy (Taylor-Key Rivera) lives with her Aunt Em (Barbyly Noel) and Uncle Henry (Ervin Vazquez) on a farm in Kansas. They are having trouble keeping up payments on the farm.
When Toto her dog is taken away from her because he bite Miss Gulch (Emily Ramirez) Dorothy tries to get him back. Toto manages to escape. Dorothy is almost near the farm when a tornado hits. When she wakes up nothing looks familiar. Glinda a friendly witch tells her the house landed in the Wicked Witch of the East. She tells her to put on the witches red slippers. Glinda then tells to follow the yellow brick road to see the Wizard of Oz he is the only one that can get her home. On the way she meets the Scarecrow (Derrick Montalvo), he wants a brain, the Tinman (Ben Harburg) he wants a heart and the Lion (Dexter Thomas-Payne) he wants courage. Dorothy encourages them to join her on her way to Oz. Maybe the Wizard can help them too.
Given this is an off off Broadway production and its aim for
a younger audience, they did a great job. If you are older you will enjoy it
Several of the actors do several roles.
Taylor-Rey Rivera sings beautifully.
I was impressed with Derrick Montalvo movements and turns. He was so graceful.
There is a screen on the back of the stage that lets you know where you are with pictures. The cast brings out the props.
There are steps leading to the audience in the center. The Scarecrow and Lion would go to the top steps in the middle of the audience and on the steps going to the audience on the sides. They would interact with the children. The kids were thrilled.
General admission is $10. What could be a better way to introduce a young audience to live theatre. The children in the audience had a good time. I saw it on their faces.
Review by Rozanna Radakovich.