Monday, April 16, 2007

Dorothy at Last

This week my daughter is in a production of The Wizard of Oz. She is one munchkin among dozens. She hoped, hoped, hoped to be one of the Lullaby League munchkins, but though she progressed through several auditions, she did not make the final cut.

This follows my own Wizard of Oz experiences as a child. I was in two productions of Oz in two different towns where my family lived. The first time I was hoping for Dorothy, but was cast as the Good Witch of the North. The director explained that I was very good, but they felt more confident having an older girl play Dorothy. Fast forward four years and we are living in a different place. Once again I audition for Oz, hoping for Dorothy. This time I am cast as the First Winkie--a big demotion to my mind. Once again the director explained that they felt that Dorothy should go to a more mature actress. (I'll say she was mature. When she showed up at the cast party wearing skin tight leather pants and the skimpiest of sweaters, the little munchkins' eyes just about popped out of their heads. She is now a lounge singer. But I digress).

I confess that I am sure that, spiritual calling aside, some small part of what pushed me into the preaching life was a desire for vindication. I really can carry the whole show. Every week. So there you idiot Children's Theater directors. When I step into the pulpit on Sunday, somewhere my inner ten-year-old raises a fist and says: Aha! Dorothy at last!


ppb said...

I directed Wizard of Oz back when I was a teacher, and I can say that nothing brings out the upset mommies and daddies more than girls who don't get to be Dorothy. I think it's a childhood rite of passage to want to be Dorothy.

I wish I had been Dorothy.

Quotidian Grace said...

That is so interesting! When Babs was in elementary school they did Wizard of Oz. All the girls, including Babs, were dying to be...The Witch! Not Dorothy.

Babs got the part--green makeup and all! Boy were the other girls upset. She is still remembered around here as the girl who got to play the witch!

Since I recently learned that we're descended from a woman who was executed as a witch in the Salem trials, it all fits somehow.

We'll get you Dorothy and your little dog too!!


Presbyterian Gal said...

After seeing "Wicked" last month, I turned in my ruby slippers for Glinda's bubble. Though Elphaba the Green had better songs, Glinda's part stole the show. There's an inner preacher for ya! (And, QG, she's a witch too!!)

Anitra said...

So... now I have an even better appreciation of why you were so wonderful leading the Sing-along viewing of the Wizard of Oz at Summer Conference a few years back...

Somewhere in my Girl Scout camping days (high school - it got more fun) I learned to walk and sing the lollypop guild song. I taught it to both my daughters. My elder enjoys doing the song and walk with me to this day but my younger still worries about her image from time to time.

cheesehead said...

When, oh when will schools stop doing productions that were originally meant to be "star vehicles"--shows meant to star one and only one person?

My daughter was in a school theatre company filled with some of the most entitled mommies and daddies in the world. It made me sick the lengths to whic parents would go to to try to get their kid the starring role.

juniper68 said...

This brought back so many memories of my 14 year old GLENDA experience (my friends from hi school still call me Glenda sometimes...)

Presbyterian Gal said...

But, Juniper 68, it really is GLINDA. I even pulled out my Playbill. I'll send you a copy. And in my annotated copy of the original Wizard of Oz, she's just the "Witch of the North". I think the name came with the MGM movie.

(oh dear *wiping sweat* disturbing how I know all this. Worse yet, why it matters......)