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Showing posts from December, 2020

Zooming Into Oz

As veterans of theater festivals can testify, fringe shows need a single-minded commitment from their creators. The “let’s put on a show” attitude in 2020 helped a number of theater originators overcome a truly horrible year where small venues and live productions were shut down across the country. premiered at FringeArts’ Philadelphia Fringe Festival in September. The director and writer Amber Kusching envisioned her own interactive, virtual take on Oz. Like most modern adaptations of the first book, the influence of MGM’s iconic The Wizard of Oz as well as Gregory Maguire’s Wicked could be heavily felt in the science fiction spin that she placed on this reimagining of Baum’s first Oz book. As the play opened, “Dorothee” and the audience were sucked into a Zoom meeting with oddly familiar characters like the robotic 10-MAN, a cowardly guy called Lyman, and the helpful hologram GLINDA. Besetting them all was a certain wicked malware with a familiar cackle to Oz fans. Perfor