Way over the rainbow in Skaneateles

SST's presentation of the main characters of this play, such as the heroine who is a young girl named Dorothy (Ashley Prickel), her sidekick, a bow wow named Toto (Laker), the aforementioned scarecrow (Steve Bellamy), tin woodsman (Josh Wilmont) and lion (Steve Condie), the wizard (Kevin Shumway) and a good witch (Meghan Clary) and a bad witch (Mary Jo Clary) took the original roles and elevated them.

Who knew that behind the sweet face and countenance of Skaneateles' Mary Jo Clary lurked one heck of a wicked witch of the West? She was quintessential and spot on in her portrayal of this famous witch. It will be hard to look at her without remembering she was once transformed into the green-faced, hook-nosed lady who melted into a pile of empty clothes after Dorothy accidentally doused her in water.

The scarecrow, more limber than a mere mortal because he is just made of straw, the tin woodsman, who was quite the opposite, and their eventual pal, the cowardly lion, were played more than perfectly with great singing too. I was reminded of how much I really liked these characters and their symbolic quests for a brain (the scarecrow), a heart (the tin woodsman) and courage (the cowardly lion), which they always had within themselves from the start. Now as an adult I realized how difficult they were to play, which did not appear to daunt the Skaneateles actors chosen for these roles. I'm sure I laughed more at the cowardly lion this time around than all the other viewing put together. Hey, I'm still laughing thinking about him!

Dorothy was fresh faced and innocent. She was well cast; Glinda the good witch was as beautiful and comforting as ever; the wizard was wizardly in all his incarnations. Especially his mean old tough wizard machine, which seemed even scarier than the original.

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