By Nancy Churnin, Mila Vincent, and Johannah Luza | Photos by Johannah Luza ~
Have show? Will review! Nothing stops our intrepid five-year-old theater critic, Mila Vincent, from finding and sharing gems with fans of her #MilaSays column for Theatrically Speaking. This time, Mila and her grandmother and co-reviewer, Johannah Vincent, watched The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, a streaming production by The Luckenbooth Theatre’s youth performers. The company’s new stage adaptation by artistic director Megan Hildebrand is so faithful to the book; it referred to “silver shoes” — author L. Frank Baum’s original description — rather than the ruby slippers that became famous from the screenplay of the popular film. Mila’s grandmother wondered if the show produced in a safe, socially distanced way, and had no singing, would keep Mila’s attention. But Mila, dressed in a lion dress (in keeping with her mission to always dress appropriately for the shows she sees), “stayed glued to the screen the entire time!” Johannah writes.
Mila: Everyone knows the story of The Wizard of Oz, but this one was a little different with a few surprises! Dorothy’s shoes were not ruby red slippers, but I won’t spoil it and tell you what color they were! The actors were kids like me and didn’t have very long to rehearse, but they did a good job. I’m not sure I could do that! The Wizard had different costumes, and one was kind of scary! And then there was an intermission, so my Grandma and I had some Italian Ice to munch on during the second half! It was a fun night, and we just pretended we were at the real theater!
Johannah: I wasn’t sure if a five-year-old would be interested in this different version of The Wizard of Oz and because of the filming style due to the COVID rules. But Mila stayed glued to the iPad for the entire show! Theaters are doing the best they can to survive, and the child actors were so happy to be “back on stage” even though things are different today. We want to keep these theaters alive, and they certainly are trying to adapt! Oh, and Mila found her Lion dress to wear for this adaptation of “The Wizard of Oz!”
Where: Your Computer, Tablet , or Phone – On Demand
From: The Luckenbooth Theatre presents The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
When: Through July 26
Luckenbooth Theatre is located at:
1929 Golden Heights Road, Suite 800
Fort Worth, TX.