We’re Off to See the Wizard

The Longhorn theatre kids can finally exhale now that the “Wizard of Oz” has been cast. So who made the cut?


Photo by Anna Robertson

By Anna Robertson

Nerves. Excitement. Apprehension. Anxiety.

These are the feelings one can associate with the announcement of the cast list for the winter musical, “The Wizard of Oz.” In mid-September, those who tried out for the musical found out whether or not they had gotten cast in their desired roles.

“There’s always anxiety. I’m always on edge and never want to talk to anybody after auditions. It’s hectic because everyone is trying to predict who is going to get what,” senior Haley Enns said.

Luckily for Enns, it was her name that appeared next to the character of Dorothy, the lead female role in the classic book, movie, and theatrical musical.

“I was really hoping I would,” Enns said about getting cast as Dorothy. “But you know it was really tough competition. In the end there were four people they were considering for Dorothy, and I was honored to be called back.”

Enns is not the only George Ranch theatre member who was pleased with the role she received. Senior Sarah May was also in high spirits on the day the cast list was announced.

“When I found out I would be playing the Wicked Witch it was like a dream come true,” May said. “The Wicked Witch of the West has always been my dream role, so now I can’t wait to start working on the show and my evil laugh. And who wouldn’t want to be green?”

However, as May explained, the best way to approach the situation is not to hope for a character, but rather, to keep an open mind on audition day.

“Auditioning is always nerve racking and intimidating, but what always works for me is taking time to learn my song lyrics and going in with an open mind,” May said. “You never know what character you will be asked to read for.”

The theatre department has decided to opt for a slightly different version of the “Wizard of Oz” than the one many students are familiar with where Judy Garland plays Dorothy.

“Everyone will recognize the music, but it’ll be just a little bit different,” Mrs. Walters, the theatre director, said. “So when you come there will be a little different twist on it, and you’ll enjoy it. But there’s just a lot of tongue-in-cheek funny stuff in it.”

The “Wizard of Oz” is known for its signature soundtrack. It is imperative that classics like “Somewhere over the Rainbow” are performed justly. In order to audition for a musical, students must be on their A-game when it comes to singing.

“You get the date weeks in advance, and you can be practicing,” senior Trevor Martin, who will be playing ‘the Wizard’ said. “I mean I know people who were singing ‘Somewhere over the Rainbow’ for like three weeks with vocal coaches.”

Senior Abby Eschler can attest to that. Like both May and Enns, Eschler was lucky to receive the role she had secretly desired, Glenda the Good Witch. However, it was no easy task to simply snag the role. She knew what she wanted, and worked to get there.

“We get the song. We get the part of the song we have to sing, and we rehearse, and rehearse, and rehearse. And then, we audition,” Eschler said.

The “Wizard of Oz” will begin being performed December 5. And when it comes to this musical, said Mrs. Walters, “Expect to be surprised.”