This past week on December 3rd, like every other year, NBC premiered a live musical. This year’s musical was “The Wiz.” The original musical starred very famous people like, Diana Ross as “Dorothy” and Michael Jackson as “Scarecrow.” I don’t know about you, but I was tuned in! The musical that premiered this week had an amazing cast!
- Shanice Williams(19, New to the stage)- “Dorothy”
- Neyo- “Tin Man”
- Elijah Kelley- “Scarecrow”
- David Alan Grier- “the Cowardly Lion”
- Queen Latifah- “Oz”
- Mary J. Blige- Evillene (The Wicked Witch of the West)
- Amber Riley- “Addapearle” (Good Witch of the North)
I really enjoyed this play. While sticking to the main story, they gave it a modern twist. This was so smart! There were so many new dances and terms that people of my generation caught on to immediately like the dab, the Quan, and the Nae Nae! Dorothy referred to the other characters as her squad saying that, “Squad means family. Squad means no one gets left behind or forgotten,” which is a reference to one of our favorite childhood cartoons, ‘Lilo and Stich,’ “Ohana means family. Family means nobody gets left behind or forgotten.” Classic! I’m glad they did this because ‘The Wiz’ was a musical that was out before my generations time. Many of us have seen it, but not enough. It is very important because it featured an all Black cast and it was one of the first all African-American musicals. So, I love the fact that they gave it a little touch up but stuck to what the story was all about. And if you have seen the original, and watched ‘The Wiz Live,’ then you noticed how close they kept it to the original. They kept the original music as well as added new songs and they also stuck to the story line and scenes.
As I continued to watch, I couldn’t help but be amazed by the beautiful costumes.
I give so many props to the people in charge of makeup and costumes because this clearly took a lot of time, patience and of course creativity. They did an amazing job at bringing out each characters role and personality through the costumes.
Finally, I want to talk about the star of the show. A big shoutout to Shanice Williams (Dorothy). Shanice is a 19 year old musical theater student from New Jersey. While watching ‘the Wendy Williams Show’ I learned that she went to the audition for ‘The Wiz’ mainly for the experience, not really expecting to get the role. The fact that she did is a big deal! She performed extremely well, and I know that from here on out her life is going to change because she is truly talented. So many doors will open for her. As I watched her grace through her performance, my main thought was, ” How does she manage to remain so calm while on stage with all of these amazing actors and singers?!” Just imagine performing for the first time and its alongside people like Queen Latifah, Mary J. Blige, Neyo, Amber Riley, etc. I would be SO NERVOUS! Shanice Williams did an amazing job though, so, a special congratulations to her! ❤
If you have not seen the musical yet, I highly suggest you watch it. It’s definitely a must see! You will absolutely fall in love with it and all of the characters. If you saw the musical, what did you think? How did you like it compared to the original? Comment down below and share your thoughts! ❤