Hawaii Mom Blog: Wicked - On Stage in Honolulu through Jan. 12, 2013




November 27, 2012

Wicked - On Stage in Honolulu through Jan. 12, 2013

Long before Dorothy drops in, two other girls meet in the land of Oz. One - born with emerald green skin - is smart, fiery and misunderstood.  The other is beautiful, ambitious and very popular.  Wicked tells the story of their remarkable odyssey, how these two unlikely friends grow to become the Wicked Witch of the West and Glinda the Good.

It's hard not to use puns such as "bewitched" or "spellbound" to describe Wicked, but that's exactly how I felt during the performance.

I was captivated by the cast, the music, the costumes, and the sets, but most of all, I was captivated by the story.

During the opening scene, as the Munchkins celebrated the death of Elphaba the Wicked Witch, Glinda "floated" into the scene in her bubble.

Immediately it was evident that Glinda, played by Patti Murin, would steal the show, as she had a likable shallowness to her that often resulted in many laughs.

Soon after we were introduced to the emerald-skinned Elphaba, played by Dee Roscioli, who Glinda meets at Shiz University.

Roscioli did a wonderful job playing a character who was both hardened and vulnerable because of the harsh reality of her green skin.

She knew she was "beautifully tragic," especially when compared to her "tragically beautiful" sister, Nessarose.  She just wished others would accept her the same way she had accepted herself.

As the story goes on, we find out how Glinda and Elphaba become friends after initially loathing each other, how they both end up falling for a prince named Fiyero (played by local boy Cliffton Hall, who did a great job in portraying Fiyero's "scandalacious" perfection), and how Elphaba's wish to meet the Wizard finally came true, which eventually led to her demise.

Wicked did a fantastic job in intertwining the story and characters of The Wizard of Oz, and there were also a few surprises behind the history of a few of the characters.

Overall I thought the entire cast was great, but Murin's Glinda was definitely the scene-stealer.  

One of my favorite scenes - and the audience's too, was when she attempted to show Elphaba how to be popular, and one way of doing so was to "toss, toss" her hair.

As Glinda demonstrated the "toss toss," the crowd roared in laughter.

Disappointed with Elphaba's attempt at a "toss toss," Glinda demonstrated it again.

She was so serious and intent on showing Elphaba the proper way to "toss toss," that the crowd was in hysterics, and Roscioli couldn't help but crack a smile and laugh a little too.

Although I thought Murin was exceptional, my absolute favorite performance was given by Roscioli at the end of Act I.  Both Murin and Roscioli performed Defying Gravity, however, it was Roscioli's time to shine as she belted out her heart while hovering in the air.

It was a pivotal moment in the story, as well as for Elphaba herself. 

There were many other moving performances throughout the show (although at times it was a bit hard to hear the lyrics - not sure if it was a sound issue or simply where I was seated), and there were also many comedic moments that made the storyline even that much more enjoyable.

Whether it was because of the characters' use of their own special vocabulary (e.g. "disturberance," "festivating," "outuendo"), the humorous references to The Wizard of Oz (e.g. Dorothy's dog "Dodo," Elphaba mentioning "there's no place like home"), or simply the endearing quirks of each character, there was just the right amount of humor sprinkled throughout the story.

Wicked is indeed a very entertaining story about the history of Glinda and Elphaba, and it's also a very meaningful one too, as it stresses how important it is to look beyond one's differences, trust one's instincts, and believe in one's self.

Wicked is simply a beautiful story, and the entire cast and crew did an amazing job in bringing the story to life.

Wicked continues through January 12, 2013 at the Neal S. Blaisdell Concert Hall.

For more information, visit Ticketmaster.com/wicked.

Subscription packages and group sales are available now and can be purchased by calling (808) 593-2468 or online at www.broadwayinhawaii.com.

For information on $25 lottery seats, click here.

Thank you to the sponsor for providing complimentary tickets to the show.

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