The Wizard Of Oz

Musical with music by Harold Arlen and lyrics by E 'Yip' Harburg, based on the book by L Frank Baum. 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 to Kansas.

1946: West End London Premiere at the Winter Garden Theatre and Saville Theatre

1947/1948: 1st West End London Revival at the Strand Theatre

1961: London Revival (on ice) at the Empire Pool Wembley

1971/1972: 2nd West End London Revival at the Victoria Palace

1978: 3rd West End London Revival at the Whitehall Theatre

1987/1988: London Revival at the Barbican Theatre

2008: London Revival at the Royal Festival Hall

2011: 4th West End London Revival at the London Palladium

Originally a 1939 MGM film starring Judy Garland as 'Dorothy', Frank Morgan as 'Professor Marvel'/'The Wizard of Oz', Jack Haley as 'Hickory'/'The Tin Man', Ray Bolger as 'Hunk'/'The Scarecrow', Bert Lahr as 'Zeke'/'The Cowardly Lion', Billie Burke as 'Glinda', and Margaret Hamilton as 'Miss Gulch'/'The Wicked Witch of the West'.

Stephen Schwartz's Wicked the Musical is a 'prequel', telling the untold story of the witches of Oz.


1946: West End London Premiere at the Winter Garden Theatre and Saville Theatre

Opened 26 December 1946 (no previews), Closed 25 January 1947 at the Winter Garden Theatre (now rebuilt as the Gillian Lynne Theatre)
Transferred 30 January 1947, Closed 22 March 1947 at the Saville Theatre (now Odeon Covent Garden Cinema)

Adapted by Janet Green from Paul Tietjens' 1902 stage musical version of the book by L Frank Baum, using songs from the 1939 movie by Harold Arlen and E Y Harburg.

The cast included Diana Yardley as 'Dorothy', Raymond Lovell as 'The Showman'/'The Wizard of Oz', Fred Kitchen Jr as 'Nick'/'The Tin Man', Walter Crisham as 'Billy'/'The Scarecrow', Claude Hulbert as 'Leo'/'The Lion', Harold Tarran as 'Toto', Ruth Naylor as 'Aunt Em'/'Glinda', and Ellen Pollock as 'Wilma'/'The Witch of the North'.

Directed by Basil Dean, with designs by John McCormick.

At the Winter Garden this production played afternoon matinee performances, while Joan Temple's No Room at the Inn played as usual in the evenings (The Wizard of Oz played morning performances on the days when No Room at the Inn played afternoon matinees). The production then transferred to the Saville Theatre where it played early evening performances at 6.30pm on Monday to Wednesday and Friday, with performances at 4.30pm and 7.30pm on Thursday and Saturday.


1947/1948: 1st West End London Revival at the Strand Theatre

Opened 23 December 1947 (no previews), Closed Saturday 7 February 1948 at the Strand Theatre (now Novello Theatre)
Returned 24 December 1948, Closed 22 January 1949 at the Strand Theatre (now Novello Theatre)

The 'stage version of the film', with songs by Harold Arlen and E Y Harburg.

The cast included Diana Yardley as 'Dorothy', Sebastian Cabot as 'Professor Marvel'/'The Wizard of Oz', Wilfred Johns as 'Nick'/'The Tin Man', (1947), Peter Evans as 'Nick'/'The Tin Man' (1948), Richard Dolman as 'Billy'/'The Straw Man', Jackie Hunter as 'Leo'/'The Cowardly Lion', Sydney Broad as 'Toto' (1947), Adastra Starlight as 'Toto' (1948), Peggy Anne Tyler as 'Aunt Em'/'Good Witch' (1947), Ann Martin as 'Aunt Em'/'The Good Witch'/'Glinda' (1948), Natalie Lynn as 'Wilma'/'The Wicked Witch', and Billie Baker as 'Glinda' (1947).

Directed by Edward Beaumont (1947), Frank Collins (1948) and Gordon Stewart, with sets by George Ramon, costumes by Josephine Clinch, and choreography by Edward Beaumont (1947) and Donald Joureaux.

Presented Monday to Saturday 'twice-daily' afternoon matinees and early evenings during the holiday period.

Prior to London's West End this production, with the same cast, was presented at the Blackpool Opera House for a two-week season from Tuesday 2 December to Saturday 13 December 1947.


1961: London Revival at the Empire Pool Wembley

Opened 23 December 1961 (no previews), Closed 3 March 1962 at the Empire Pool Wembley (now Wembley Arena)

The Wizard of Oz on Ice. Adapted by Gerald Palmer and Stanley Lloyd from the book by L Frank Baum, with songs by Harold Arlen and E Y Harburg, and additional sogs by John Taylor.

The cast included Patricia Pauley as 'Dorothy' (sung by Iris Villiers), Steve Conway as 'Professor Marvel'/'The Wizard of Oz' (Peter Quinton), George Stevens as 'Tom'/'The Tin Man' (Peter Quinton), Bert Stevenson as 'Sam'/'The Straw Man' (Brian Chalmers), Arthur Woodjetts as 'Leo'/'The Cowardly Lion' (Brian Chalmers), Janette Dimmock as 'Toto', Gladys Ives as 'Aunt Em' (Doreen Cannon), Ron French as 'Uncle Henry' (Raymond James), and Barbel Martin as 'Miss Gulch'/'The Wicked Witch of the West' (Doreen Cannon), with narration by Raymond James.

Directed by Gerald Palmer, with choreography by Ross Taylor, sets by Edward Delany, and costumes by Anthony Holland.

An ice spectacular presented by Tom Arnold, on behalf of Holiday on Ice.

John Taylor wrote six songs for this revival: The Kansas Way; No One Will Listen to a Girl; Parade; Was It You; Visit The Wizard; and Find Your Dream.

Patricia Pauley was the 1958 and 1959 British Figure Skating Champion.


1971/1972: 2nd West End London Revival at the Victoria Palace

Previewed 24 December 1971, Opened 27 December 1971, Closed 22 January 1972 at the Victoria Palace
Returned 26 December 1972, Closed 20 January 1973 at the Victoria Palace

A stage version of the book by L Frank Baum, with songs by Harold Arlen and E Y Harburg, and adapted 'pantomime business'.

The 1971 cast included Deborah Watling as 'Dorothy', Tony Sympson as 'The Wizard', Frank Marlborough as 'The Tinman', John Clive as 'The Scarecrow', and Desmond Walter-Ellis as 'The Lion'.

The 1972 cast included Diane Raynor as 'Dorothy', Tony Sympson as 'The Wizard', Sam Kelly as 'The Tinman', Frank Marlborough as 'The Scarecrow', and Geoffrey Hughes as 'The Lion'.

Directed by Bryan C Wolfe, with choreography by Gerry Tebbutt, and designs by Brian Hewitt-Jones.

Presented 'twice-daily' for both seasons at 11.00am and 2.15pm, with the theatre's evening show - 1971: The Black and White Minstrel Show: Magic of the Minstrels; and 1972: The Max Bygraves Show - being performed as usual.


1978: 3rd West End London Revival at the Whitehall Theatre

Opened 11 December 1978, Closed 13 January 1979 at the Whitehall Theatre (now Trafalgar Theatre)

Adapted by Ron Knee from the book by L Frank Baum, with songs by Harold Arlen and E Y Harburg.

The cast included Yvonne Edgell as 'Dorothy', Nicholas Tudor as 'The Tinman', George Alexander as 'The Scarecrow', and Richard Ashley as 'The Lion'.

Directed by Ron Knee, with designs by Denis Gamblin.

NOTE: Used only songs cut from the film version.

Monday to Saturday afternoon matinees, and Saturday mornings. The theatre's evening show Ipi Tombi continued as usual.


1987/1988: London Revival at the Barbican Theatre

Previewed 12 December 1987, Opened 17 December 1987, Closed 27 February 1988 (in repertory) at the RSC Barbican Theatre
Previewed 17 December 1988, Opened 21 December 1988, Closed 14 January 1989 at the RSC Barbican Theatre

Adapted by John Kane from the book by L Frank Baum, with songs by Harold Arlen and E Y Harburg.

The cast for the 1987 season included Imelda Staunton as 'Dorothy Gale', Tony Church as 'Professor Marvel'/'The Wizard of Oz', John Bowe as 'Hickory'/'The Tinman', Paul Greenwood as 'Hunk'/'The Scarecrow', Jim Carter as 'Zekel'/'The Cowardly Lion', Dilys Laye as 'Aunt Em'/'Glinda, the Witch of the North', David Glover as 'Uncle Henry'/'Emerald City Guard', and Bille Brown as 'Miss Gulch'/'The Wicked Witch of the West'.

The cast for the 1988 season included Gillian Bevan as 'Dorothy Gale', Sebastian Shaw as 'Professor Marvel'/'The Wizard of Oz', Trevor Peacock as 'Zeke'/'The Tinman', Paul Greenwood as 'Hunk'/'The Scarecrow', Simon Green as 'Hickory'/'The Cowardly Lion', Joyce Grant as 'Aunt Em'/'Glinda, the Witch of the North', David Glover as 'Uncle Henry'/'Emerald City Guard', and Bille Brown as 'Miss Gulch'/'The Wicked Witch of the West'.

Directed by Ian Judge, with choreography by Lindsay Dolan, designs by Mark Thompson, lighting by Nick Chelton, and sound by Steff Langley and John A Leonard.


2008: London Revival at the Royal Festival Hall

Previewed 23 July 2008, Opened 29 July 2008, Closed 31 August 2008 at the Royal Festival Hall

A major revival of the classic musical The Wizard of Oz in London for a six-week summer season

Adapted by John Kane from the book by L Frank Baum, with songs by Harold Arlen and E Y Harburg, and additional musical by Herbert Stothart.

The cast included Sian Brooke as 'Dorothy', Roy Hudd as 'Professor Marvel'/'The Wizard of Oz', Adam Cooper as 'Hickory'/'The Tin Man', Hilton McRae as 'Hunk'/'The Scarecrow', Gary Wilmot as 'Zeke'/'The Cowardly Lion', Susannah Fellows as 'Aunt Em'/'Glinda, the Witch of the North', Julian Forsyth as 'Uncle Henry'/'Emerald City Guard', and Julie Legrand as 'Miss Gulch'/'The Wicked Witch of the West'.

Directed by Jude Kelly, with choreography by Nick Winston, designs by Michael Vale, video by Huntley Muir, lighting by Mike Gunning, and sound by Ed Clarke.

This production played eight-performances-a-week: Tuesday to Saturday evening, with Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday afternoon matinees.

"Part of the pleasure of Jude Kelly's stage production lies in watching a perfectly structured quest narrative, elaborated with fantastical fairy tale logic. When you add in a clutch of melodies that have reached iconic status and the cutest dog ever to have appeared on stage, you get a show which is enormous fun. Fun - but not flawless. Because designer Michael Vale has exactly replicated the movie costumes, it's hard not to make other comparisons with the film. The budget doesn't stretch to ultra-fabulous effects, for example, and because the score wasn't conceived for the stage, it doesn't obey stage laws; there are not enough musical numbers in part two and there's no grand finale. However, the strengths more than compensate for the weaknesses... Sian Brooke is a charming Dorothy, and Gary Wilmot, Adam Cooper and Roy Hudd offer tremendous support. Yup, it took me over the rainbow." The London Metro

"The panto season has turned up ear1y in London but, sad to report, it fails to offer a wizard experience. Director Jude Kelly's stage version of the famous Judy Garland movie, the first in the capital for 20 years, is stranded between movle influences from the distant past and a Kansas country bumpkin Cinderella... There are compensations: A visible 20-piece orchestra. adds quality you won't find in the local am-dram effort come Christmas. And the Scarecrow, Tin Man and Cowardly Lion, played with charm and warmth by Hilton McRae, Adam Cooper and Gary Wilmot, more than make up for Buttons having the night off. Cooper contributes a dazzling dance, while Roy Hudd mugs winningly as the Wizard... But Sian Brooke is too sturdy to convince as Dorothy, Julie Legrand overdoes the Wicked Witch of the West's cackling, and Michael Vale's childlike graphic designs fail to provide the required magic." The Sun

"Jude Kelly's delightful but finally tiring revival of the musical at the Royal Festival Hall... wins new friends with its ebullience, but loses just as many with its sheer length. There are times when it seems as if it might never stop, and that, like Dorothy, you might never make it home. Yet it is impossible not to warm to Kelly's production. It is colourful and cheerful as well as lifting you a good centimetre out of your seat with a colossal bang every time the Wicked Witch of the West comes on... And who better to play the harum-scarum but actually quite sweet and cuddly Wizard than the avuncular Roy Hudd? Maybe Sian Brooke lacks Judy Garland's candied voice, but she has a sweet authority on stage that will endear her to children... So, if you need to kill a large amount of time during the school holidays, this is one good way of doing so." The Mail on Sunday

The Wizard of Oz in London at the Royal Festival Hall previewed from 23 July 2008, opened on 29 July 2008, and closed on 31 August 2008


2011: 4th West End London Revival at the London Palladium

Previewed 7 February 2011, Opened 1 March 2011, Closed 2 September 2012 at the London Palladium

A major revival of the classic musical The Wizard of Oz in London featuring new songs by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice

Adapted by Jeremy Sams and Andrew Lloyd Webber from the book by L Frank Baum, with songs by Harold Arlen and E Y Harburg, and additional music and lyrics by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice.

The original cast featured Danielle Hope as 'Dorothy', Michael Crawford as 'Professor Marvel'/'Doorman'/'Tour Guide'/'The Wizard of Oz', Edward Baker-Duly as 'Hickory'/'The Tin Man', Paul Keating as 'Hunk'/'The Scarecrow', David Ganly as 'Zeke'/'The Cowardly Lion', Helen Walsh as 'Auntie Em'/'Munchkin Barrister', Stephen Scott as 'Uncle Henry'/'Philippe'/'Head Guard', Hannah Waddingham as 'Miss Gulch'/'The Wicked Witch of the West', Emily Tierney as 'Glinda, the Witch of the North', Zeph as 'Munchkin Mayor', David Birch as 'Munchkin Coroner', Edward Hayes-Neary as 'Winkie General', A C Garcia, Adam Bracegirdle, Adam Salter, Ashley Day, Carly Meyers, Carrie Sutton, Emily Goodenough, Emma Housely, Florence Andrews, Jay Webb, Liam Wrate, Marianne Benedict, Rachel Spurrell, Ryan Gover, Terel Nugent, Tom Kanavan, Anna Woodside, Ceili O'Connor, Luke Johnson, Matthew Barrow, Oliver Roll, Rebecca Howell, and Richard Roe.

Directed by Jeremy Sams, with choreography by Arlene Phillips, designs by Robert Jones, projections by Jon Driscoll, lighting by Hugh Vanstone, music by Herbert Stothart, and sound by Mick Potter.

The role of 'Dorothy' was played by Danielle Hope, with Sophie Evans on Tuesday evenings and holiday cover, from Monday 7 February 2011 to Sunday 5 February 2012; and Sophie Evans from Tuesday 7 February 2012 to Sunday 2 September 2012.

The role of 'Professor Marvel'/'Doorman'/'Tour Guide'/'The Wizard of Oz' was played by Michael Crawford from Monday 7 February 2011 to Sunday 5 February 2012; Stephen Scott from Tuesday 7 February 2012 to Sunday 12 February 2012; Russell Grant from Tuesday 14 February 2012 to Sunday 20 May 2012; and Des O'Connor from Tuesday 22 May 2012 to Sunday 2 September 2012.

This production played eight-performances-a-week: From Monday 7 February 2012 to Saturday 5 March 2012 it played Monday, Wednesday to Saturday at 7.30pm, Tuesday at 7.00pm, and Wednesday and Saturday at 2.30pm; and from Tuesday 8 March 2011 to Sunday 5 September 2012 it played Tuesday at 7.00pm, Wednesday to Saturday at 7.30pm, Wednesday and Saturday at 2.30pm, and Sunday at 3.00pm.

Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice wrote six new songs for this revival: Dorothy's Nobody Understands Me; Professor Marvel's The Wonders of the World; The Wizard of Oz's Bring Me the Broomstick and Farewell to Oz; The Wicked Witch of the West's Red Shoes Blues; and Glinda and Dorothy's Already Home.

"Young Dorothy's adventurous journey over the rainbow, along the yellow brick road and into the Land of Oz first came alive in the pages of a children's book published in Chicago in 1900. Last night it glittered back into vibrant life, filled with exciting innovation, colour and style from Andrew Lloyd Webber's new production... Making her professional debut, Danielle Hope sang with touching purity and a smooth, clean tone... It was also a joy to see Michael Crawford back in sparkling form as Professor Marvel as well as the Wizard. Once again he demonstrated what a highly talented performer he is and the audience's reception was justifiably very welcoming... Three performers stood out, Paul Keating as the carrot-nosed scarecrow who pleaded for a brain, Edward Baker-Duly as the Tim Man in search of a heart and - particularly brilliant - David Ganly as the cowardly lion. These three injected great comedy, sung delightfully and underlined the pathos which the original author had intended." The Daily Express

"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. It's like the biggest and best Christmas panto ever, but without the awful jokes. Well, most of them; a few are added by David Ganly's Lion. Other additions come from adapter and producer Andrew Lloyd Webber, who gives Michael Crawford's cosy Wizard a tune that's noticeably Phantom of the Ozpera. 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... The irascibility and impatience of Lloyd Webber - who has adapted the show, produced it and thrown in, with his old collaborator Tim Rice, some additional music - has clearly served it well. He has sped up the necessarily dreary opening scenes in Kansas and, within minutes, the audience is hurled into a brilliantly realised storm sequence... The special effects are, one could argue, the real star of the show... Great sets, spirited music, assured direction by Jeremy Sams, and exacting choreography from Arlene Phillips all make for a show that succeeds on every conceivable level. Best of all, perhaps, it has a script with a wicked sense of humour, which will please parents and children alike." The Sunday Telegraph

The Wizard of Oz in London at the London Palladium previewed from 7 February 2011, opened on 1 March 2011, and closed on 2 September 2012.