The Wizard Of Oz
This show has now closed, click here for a listing of current and future London shows
Previewed 7 February 2011, opened 1 March 2011, closed 2 September 2012 at the London Palladium
Follow Dorothy and her friends Toto, the Tin Man, the Scarecrow and the Cowardly Lion on their quest to find their heart's desire and a way back home in this new magical stage version of the unforgettable film. This new production of The Wizard of Oz in London is presented by Andrew Lloyd Webber and features additional new songs.
"All the best bits of the 1939 movie have sensibly been borrowed, from the Oscar-winning songs to Dorothy's distinctive dance along the yellow brick road with Tin Man, gorgeous Scarecrow and cowardly Lion. The sets, special effects and costumes more than give the movie a run for its money... Grab a kid, or don't bother, and just see it. Even the brilliantly renovated theatre puts on a show!" The News of the World
"Technically, dramatically and emotionally, The Wizard of Oz glistens. I would go so far as to say it re-defines what a great West End show is. I am limited to giving it five stars today, but I would say it is off the scale - this is a 10-star production if ever there was one... Andrew Lloyd Webber has clearly served it well." The Sunday Telegraph
"The spectacular visuals in The Wizard of Oz, the West End megamusical co-produced by Andrew Lloyd Webber, can certainly generate excitement... All this wizardry is slickly directed by Jeremy Sams. Robert Jones's sets are outstanding, from his lonesome farmstead to the psychedelia of Dorothy's dreamland. There the yellow brick road is a ring of light revolving around tropical flowers, and the Emerald City a metropolis of Art Deco skyscapers, sheering into the stratosphere at Expressionist angles... Some might say this production would be better if it only had a heart. Personally, I felt let down by the lack of sharp ideas. Jeremy Sams gestures towards a political reading, but only makes the Wicked Witch's henchmen a vague mishmash of Nazi stormtroopers and Cossacks. So, after inducing an initial high, the lavish staging feels increasingly vacuous." The Independent on Sunday
"Pots of gold, at the end of the rainbow, must have paid for Robert Jones's spectacular sets, offset by Jon Driscoll's virtuoso special effects... Jeremy Sams's direction is undaunted throughout. This show knows where it is going, as surely as if Dorothy had satnav to guide her home." The Observer
"So was I over the rainbow? Alas, not at all. How ironic that a story about wanting a heart has so little. Nevertheless, in terms of Technicolor spectacle, Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Wizard Of Oz seldom disappoints, whirling you away on an imaginative adventure as giddying as the Kansas cyclone that sucks Dorothy into a dream world. The engineering is astounding, but emotionally the show takes you absolutely nowhere. Robert Jones's gloriously inventive sets are faithful to the 1939 film we all know by heart... Most show-stopping of all is the Wicked Witch of the West's castle." The Mail on Sunday
"The director, Jeremy Sams, is also responsible for the adaptation of the story, along with Lloyd Webber, and it's this that is the real failure. There is neither subversive satirical bite nor theatrical magic here -- though the original Baum story was distinctly, mordantly political, from the opening scene of rural penury onwards. Sams and Lloyd Webber never play with our expectations, the fact that we all know the story already... The sets by Robert Jones are terrific, though, and, with the projection designer, Jon Driscoll, he whips up a terrific tornado early on, the most dramatic few minutes of the evening... This is an extravagant spectacle, a very slick and expensive pantomime, and doubtless it will run and run." The Sunday Times
The Wizard of Oz is written by L Frank Baum, with music and lyrics by Harold Arlen and EY Harburg and is based upon the Classic Motion Picture owned by Turner Entertainment Co. and distributed in all media by Warner Bros. Additional music and lyrics by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice. It is directed by Jeremy Sams with choreography by Arlene Phillips and designs by Rob Jones.
The Wizard of Oz in London at the London Palladium previewed from 7 February 2011 and opened on 1 March 2011 and closed on 2 September 2012.