Getting to Know the Characters

Character Breakdown

Main Roles

Dorothy Gale – is a sweet, innocent young lady who has a streak of boldness. She lives on a farm with her Aunt Em and Uncle Henry but dreams of escaping to a far-off place where she does not get into so much trouble. She and her do, Toto, are inseparable. She is a bit outspoken and headstrong, but dearly loves her family and friends. Dorothy needs to be a strong vocalist and a good dancer.

Gender: female
Solos? Yes. Lines? Yes.
The student who plays this role will require a lot of extra coaching, expect extra rehearsals.

Hunk/Scarecrow – Hunk is one of three farmhands who offers Dorothy advice about how to deal with Miss Gulch. The same actor that plays Hunk will also play the Scarecrow when in Oz, and the audience should be able to make the connection between the two through body language and speech. Both characters talk about being smart and having a brain. The Scarecrow is also quite clumsy, so this actor will need to have good body control.

Gender: either
Solos? Yes. Lines? Yes
The student who plays this role will require a lot of extra coaching, expect extra rehearsals.

Zeke/Lion – Zeke is another farmhand who talks to Dorothy about her problems, advising her to just “have a little courage.” His Oz alter ego, the Lion, is lacking courage. Although he will act tough from time to time, his true fearful self comes out in any scary situation. The actor who plays the lion must have good comedic timing, be able to take positive risks and really enjoy being on stage.

Gender: either
Solos? Yes. Lines? Yes
The student who plays this role will require a lot of extra coaching, expect extra rehearsals.

Hickory/Tin Man – Hickory is the third farmhand, and his Oz alter ego is the Tin Man, who lacks a heart. The Tin Man is kind, sweet and nurturing. This performer needs to have good control of their body and possess a pleasant singing voice.

Gender: either
Solos? Yes. Lines? Yes
The student who plays this role will require a lot of extra coaching, expect extra rehearsals.

Toto – is Dorothy’s beloved dog. When the action takes place in Kansas, Toto is played by a puppet that is manipulated by the actor. In Oz, Toto transforms into a dog costume. This person should be energetic with exuberant body language. They should be able to bark with expression.

Gender: either
Solos? No. Lines? Mostly barking.
The student who plays this role will require extra coaching, expect extra rehearsals.

Miss Gulch/Wicked Witch of the West – Miss Gulch is a well-off neighbor who is cold-hearted and hates Toto for getting into her yard. In Oz, the same actress plays the Wicked Witch of the West, who wants revenge on Dorothy. Depending on the student cast, this may or may not be a singing role. This actress needs to have a flair for the dramatic and a strong stage presence. As the witch’s laugh is a classic element, this actress needs to be able to cackle with ease.

Gender: female
Solos? Maybe. Lines? Yes, lots.
The student who plays this role will require a lot of extra coaching, expect extra rehearsals.

Professor Marvel/Wizard of Oz – is a traveling salesman whose career of the moment is fortune telling. The audience should get the idea that he is a bit of a con man however, he has a good heart. Similarly, his Oz counterpart, the Wizard, is a con man as well – just an average guy with a fantastic facade. When he is playing the mysterious Oz’s Voice, he should sound strong and commanding. This is a speaking-only role with a great deal of dialogue to memorize.

Gender: male
Solos? No. Lines? Lots
The student who plays this role will require extra coaching, expect extra rehearsals.

Minor Roles

Glinda – is the Good Witch of the North who guides Dorothy in her journey through Oz. She should have a delicate, graceful manner and a lovely voice. Glinda is a mother figure for Dorothy, as well as for the Munchkins.

Gender: female
Solos? Yes. Lines? Yes.
The student who plays this role will require extra coaching, expect some extra rehearsals.

Aunt Em – is a typical hard-working farmer’s wife. Although she is consumed by her responsibilities, underneath it all she cares very much for Dorothy’s feelings and well-being. Aunt Em must be able to show both her strong side and her softer side. Aunt Em sings the reprise of “Over the Rainbow,” but this is mainly an acting role. This character will also be an Ozian.

Gender: female
Solos? Yes, a small one. Lines? Yes.
The student who plays this role will require extra coaching, expect some extra rehearsals.

Uncle Henry – is the owner of the farm and Aunt Em’s husband. He adores Dorothy, but it is clear that Aunt Em is much more in charge of Dorothy’s upbringing. Uncle Henry is a speaking role with only a few lines. This character will also be an Ozian.

Gender: male
Solos? No. Lines? Yes.
The student who plays this role will require extra coaching, expect some extra rehearsals.

Munchkin Characters – some Munchkins will be featured in small singing solos:

Munchkin #1 & #2 – small solos in Munchkin Musical Sequence for girls or boys
Mayor, Coroner, City Father, Barrister – small solos in Munchkin Sequence for a girls or boys
Tots – group of young girl munchkins, sing short solos as a group
Tough Guys – group of young boy munchkins, sing short solos as a group

The student who plays this role will require some extra coaching, expect extra a few extra rehearsals.

Crows and Apple Trees – these students will have added responsibilities in the Scarecrow and Tinman’s scenes. They will not be ensemble members who will not be Munchkins but instead they will be Ozians.

Gender: either
Solos? The Crows sing as a group. The Trees do not sing. Lines? Some students will have a few.

Doorman – the Doorman of the Emerald City is a comical character who tries to be tough but tuns into a “softy.”

Gender: either
Solos? No. Lines? Yes
The student who plays this role will require some extra coaching, expect extra a few extra rehearsals.

Guard – the Guard of the Emerald City acts similarly to the Doorman, changing from harshness to sympathy upon hearing Dorothy cry. This is another comedic role.

Gender: either
Solos? No. Lines? Yes
The student who plays this role will require some extra coaching, expect extra a few extra rehearsals.

Featured Dancing/Singing Roles

Cyclone/Yellow Brick Road Dancers – these roles are for students who show exceptional skills in dance. They will support the story telling in an ensemble bringing the cyclone and the yellow brick road to life!

Jitterbugs –┬áthese roles are for students who show exceptional skills in both singing and dancing. They will be featured as a singing and dancing ensemble in the big dance number “the Jitterbug.” Jitterbugs are a group sent by the Wicked Witch to out-dance Dorothy. They will also be munchkins.

Optimistic Voices Chorus – these roles are for students who show exceptional skills in singing. They will sing a short piece marking the entry of Dorothy and the trio to the Emerald City.

Winged Monkey Puppeteers – this role is for students who exhibit great physical presence and abilities to bring an object to life. They will be costumed as Winged Monkey ensemble members but they will also manipulate a monkey puppet that will support the story telling when the monkeys fly from the Wicked Witch’s castle.

Ensemble Roles

Munchkins – every ensemble member will play two roles. Munchkin and something else! Munckins are little people who live in Munchkin land, the place in Oz where Dorothy’s house has landed. The Munchkins have a child-like innocence, and they are full of joy and enthusiasm as they celebrate their newfound freedom.

Winged Monkeys – are the Wicked Witch’s animal army. There are no lines or singing involved. Actors need to master monkey posture and have a lot of fun doing it!

Winkie Guards – are a group of the Wicked Witch’s guards. The sing and move in military formation.

Ozians – are the people who live in the Emerald City. Their favorite color is green.

Other Roles

We won’t cast all of the special roles right away as we know that auditions can be stressful! Often as rehearsals get going some students begin to shine in new ways. We like to save some small roles to give to students who show great improvement in the early days of our time as a cast.

Some of these roles are: Lady in a Rocking Chair, Rowboat Man #1 and #2, Cow, Oz Woman, Wizard’s assistant, Nikko (leader of the Winged Monkeys), Leader of the Winkies, Cat

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